Penang Forum 2 was held at the Caring Society Complex on 7 March 2010 with the theme ‘Has anything changed after two years?’
The Forum passed two resolutions urging the Penang state government to revive local government elections as well as to disclose the Penang State Local Plans.
Why Penang Forum 2
The Pakatan Rakyat has now ruled Penang for two years. What has changed during that period? What has the new Penang State Government achieved or has it lost its way? Are there obstacles we don’t know about? What are the constraints arising from our centralised federal system? What about the budget for Penang?
Has the government attempted to improve the quality of life in areas such as public transport and traffic congestion, affordable housing, recreational facilities, accessibility for the disabled, environmental protection and gender equality? What has become of the Local Plan? How has the government responded to calls for local government elections? What about problems faced in Seberang Perai, which the 2008 forum neglected to address? These are some of the issues that will be discussed at the 2010 forum.
The idea behind all this is not simply to organise yet another forum, but to couple this with popular consultation and participation on the issues that matter. In this regard, the future direction of Penang is not only dependent on lobbying the government of the day but in seizing the opportunity to outline and promote a vision of the Penang we desire.
The Working Group for the Penang Forum 2 is drawn from representatives of the following groups: Aliran, Jerit Penang, Malaysian Nature Society, Penang Heritage Trust, Penang Transport Council, Persatuan Orang Cacat Anggota Malaysia (Pocam), Sustainable Independent Living and Access (Sila), Suaram Penang and Women’s Centre for Change.