KUALA LUMPUR: Kebun-Kebun Bangsar has been granted a new temporary occupation licence to allow the urban farm to remain on its site.

City Hall Planning executive director Datuk Sulaiman Mohamed told the New Straits Times this today after a meeting with residents and farm volunteers.

“It is now status quo for the farm, but we will iron out issues related to the farm animals on the ground,” he said.

He said the Federal Territories Land and Mines Office made the application for the licence and would be placing the farm back under its Local Agenda 21 programme.

Sulaiman said the decision was made on June 28, after ground checks and gauging community support for the urban farm.

“We will continue to monitor their operations and iron out issues as they crop up.”

The temporary occupation licence given to the farm in 2016 had lapsed in 2018 and the farm faced eviction.

The farm was slapped with an eviction notice in a letter dated June 23 for violating terms of its temporary occupation licence.

The notice said the farm operator had violated the terms of its licence by setting up permanent structures and rearing livestock, which irked some residents.

Lembah Pantai member of parliament Fahmi Fadzil, who brokered the meeting today, said dated land laws needed sweeping amendments to set out guidelines for projects that optimised land use for socially beneficial projects.

He was referring to laws banning the use of land under electrical pylons.

He said the Housing and Local Government Ministry was best placed to start the ball rolling on the matter.

Kebun-Kebun Bangsar founder Ng Sek San said the meeting with City Hall, the Land and Mines Office and Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) was a constructive one with a very positive outcome.

“Our residents, residential association, NGOs and Fahmi have come out in force today to bring about this positive outcome.

“We at Kebun-Kebun Bangsar are very grateful to them and look forward to more positive engagement with the authorities to enable more local communities to start their own urban farms and gardens.”

At the meeting today, Malaysian Muslim Consumers’ Association chief activist Datuk Nadzim Johan said he had received 100 calls on his complaints line pledging support for the farm.

“Some have even said that they should be given an award,” he said.

The meeting was also attended by residents and representatives from TNB and the Land Office, who explained that they were in support of the project, but the animals were a no-go.

The TNB representative said farm volunteers had ensured that the trees that were deemed as “structures” in the notice were regularly trimmed.

Earlier, Federal Territories Land and Mines Office director Datuk Muhammad Yasir Yahya said Kebun-Kebun Bangsar was the subject of various complaints from residents who live in the area.

He said their complaints were lodged via “verbal and written reports” and they alleged that the farm was a “nuisance”.

The Land Office said their checks found that the farm kept livestock such as chicken, ducks and sheep, which caused issues with odour, flies and noise.

Article by: New Straits Times