GEORGE TOWN: The Penang Island City Council (MBPP) will assign officers to several tourist hotspots to monitor cleanliness and safety aspects, in conjunction with the Aidilfitri celebration and Songkran festival, next week.

The MBPP Municipal Services Department (JPP) Sub-Committee chairman, Rohaizat Hamid, said the move was part of preparations to address litter-related problems faced by the committee every year, especially during the Songkran celebration.

“We expect the number of visitors to increase this year due to the Aidilfitri holiday, and at the same time there is a Songkran festival along Batu Feringghi beach and in Lorong Burma near Pulau Tikus, and the problem of littering is our main concern now.

“To address the problem, several steps have been arranged, by placing 25 cleaning staff in those areas who will monitor it daily from March 12 to 14,” he told reporters at a press conference here today.

Rohaizat, who is also a member of the MBPP Council, said that, apart from that, initiatives were also taken by placing 27 additional trash bins at Batu Feringghi beach, and six other bins at Lorong Burma, while in other hotspot areas, such as Padang Kota Lama and Gurney Bay, cleaning by pickers will be done daily.

In the meantime, Rohaizat said that MBPP, through the Anti Litter unit, will also be tasked to provide education to the public so that they do not litter arbitrarily, and the police will also be tasked to help control the flow of traffic.

“All business activities during the Songkran festival must have a valid licence, including hawkers. Patrols and appropriate action will be taken against unlicensed hawkers by the Licensing Department,” he said.