- 2006/11/30 Ancient wall find halts tower work

History has managed what local residents have tried but failed Ė stop the construction of a 110m revolving tower in the middle of the historical town.

Work on the tower, a stoneís throw away from the Stadhuys building, was suspended after an ancient wall believed to date back to the era of Portuguese rule in Malacca (1511-1641) was discovered.

The two-week stop work order on the tower was effective last Saturday.

Datuk Ab Rahaman Ab Karim, chairman of the Malacca Museums Corporation (Perzim) board of directors, confirmed that construction work had stopped to allow workers from the Museums Department to dig deeper into the matter.

"Nothing is conclusive yet," he said yesterday.


On Oct 10, Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Datuk Sri Dr Rais Yatim performed the ground-breaking ceremony for the revolving tower Ė a RM21mil project undertaken by Kumpulan Melaka Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the state government.

The builders were stumped when steel casing pipes inserted into the ground as part of the tower foundation hit something solid.

When the wall was unearthed, Perzim, the Museums Department and the Heritage division under the Culture, Arts and Heritage Ministry were consulted on whether the structure was one of the old bastions built by the Portuguese as stated in a map of old Malacca.

In June 2003, archaeologists uncovered centuries-old towers, forts and walls beneath the former football field of historic Dataran Pahlawan during construction of the Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall.

They found the Santiago Bastion, which was a watch tower and one of the five original bastions built by the Portuguese after they defeated the last sultan of Malacca Sultan Mahmud Shah in 1511.

The old map showed that there was a second Portuguese bastion at the site where the tower was being built.

(Source: The Star)

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