It's about time that serious action is taken on illegal advertising. They are an annoying eyesore that seriously make Malaysian urban centres, not just KL, look like slums.
I have always wondered why the local council enforcement people don't just look up the contact numbers and, once the facts are clear, just whack them with a hefty fine for creating the mess.
So, this is timely news:
KUALA Lumpur mayor Datuk Ahmad Fuad Ismail feels that enough is enough and has decided to launch a war against the widespread illegal advertisement nuisance in the federal capital.
Fuad said he would go all out to catch the perpetrators of the abuse by calling up the contact numbers on the illegal advertisements and then book them for vandalism.
He said that the only way to stop the mushrooming of illegal advertisement posters, banners and buntings put up by the ah longs (loan sharks), tuition centres and those offering various services, was to go after the persons sponsoring them.
“Removing the adverts and stickers is no longer a viable solution as the perpetrators keep coming back. Drastic action must be taken to teach the culprits a lesson,” Fuad said.
He said that the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) enforcement team would be instructed to call up the number directly and find out where they were operating from.
Read the rest of the report here.
I am also very amused by the curling and piercing remarks in Zainul Ariffin's op-ed column where he iconoclastically knocks the trend of politicians putting billboards of themselves photographed with the Prime Minister. Writes Zainul:
How did this sudden billboard mania come about, I cannot really put my finger on, but I am certain of their effect on me -- I dislike them for their vacuity, if not much more than the shallowness that they presume the public has that they can be easily impressed and affected by such displays.
In the business of public one-upmanship, many politicians have been putting up such displays with themselves pictured alongside the prime minister, albeit in smaller size. As if perception could be massaged visually, the displays are meant to imply that they, standing in the shadow of the prime minister, are powerful, too.
Some are trying to ride on the popularity, prestige and power of the prime minister. Their message seems to be: "Look at me. I am the prime minister's man (or woman). You better believe that I am powerful!"
This is additional work that the local councils need not have to be saddled with.
This practice in the past few years caused someone to remark to me that it was akin to "governing via billboards". These politicians hope that their larger-than-life-in-living-colour mugs could make us give them more love.
Incidentally, this love affair with giant billboards is not exclusive to politicians of the ruling party; opposition politicians, though on a lesser scale, are not immune either.
Be they cabinet members or menteris besar, they should not be putting up pictures of themselves with the prime minister on billboards or posters, or in newspaper advertisements. It is just not right, in my opinion.
I am quite certain that many, if not most, Malaysians share Zainul's view on these "poster politicians".