KUALA LUMPUR: City Hall has admitted that it caused damage to a delivery man’s bicycle when it was seized for a parking infringement here on Monday.
It said this happened when its enforcement officers tried to cut the lock of the bicycle, which was chained to the bus stop in front of Wisma Central in Jalan Ampang.
“The bicycle frame was dented during the cutting process,” City Hall said on Facebook.
Delivery man Khirunnizam Mohd Lani had reportedly claimed that his bicycle was damaged after it was impounded by City Hall.
He sent a letter to City Hall on Thursday to claim compensation for his damaged bicycle.
The incident, which was reported by the New Straits Times, went viral and drew criticism from netizens.
City Hall said its officers had encountered difficulties in cutting the lock and were forced to use a cable cutter.
“Khirunnizam can claim compensation from City Hall. However, the amount will be determined by the insurance panel,” it said.
City Hall said the seizure was based on standard operating procedures under Section 46 of the Street, Drainage and Building Act 1974, for causing obstruction in a public place.
Offenders face a fine of up to RM500 and their belongings may be seized for a period of 30 working days.
Many commented on the case on the NST Online Facebook page.
Most of them said City Hall should instead go after motorists who double parked their vehicles or those who rode motorcycles on the pedestrian walkways.
Thirty cyclists yesterday staged a sit-down protest in Jalan Raja Laut here to show their support for Khirunnizam. Wearing black T-shirts, they held up banners for about an hour.
The organiser of the “Sit Down 1.0” protest, Akmal Azfar Abd Mutalib, said they requested City Hall to provide more facilities for cyclists.
“If the authorities are serious in promoting cycling, they should provide us with basic facilities, such as parking areas and shower facilities at shopping malls for cyclists.”
He said organising events such as “car-free day” would not reduce gas emission and minimise pollution.
“If there are more facilities for cyclists, more people will cycle to work and this will help reduce the pollution in the city.”
Earlier, Akmal had a closed-door meeting with City Hall executive director (planning) Datuk Mohd Najib Mohd to convey the message of the protest.
“I was told that City Hall also shares the same view on this matter. City Hall told us to draw up a proposal for our request,” he said.
A City Hall spokesman said the main problem with providing bicycle parking bays at shopping malls and buildings was that the council needed to first negotiate with the owners of the premises.