WITH six years left to achieve the status of a developed and high-income nation by 2020, the development of rural areas will be the main focus and agenda for the government through the Government Transformation Programme (GTP).
Rural Development Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu highlighted in his winding-up speech yesterday that due to the success of GTP 1.0 projects, namely the Rural Road Project, Rural Water Supply Project, Rural Electric Supply Project, Housing Assistance Programme and Sustainable Village Programme, more rural development projects would be carried out in GTP 2.0 which started last year and would end in 2015.
“The initiative in increasing rural basic infrastructure is something that needs to be done continuously and in stages to ensure that all rural residents will be able to enjoy the benefits, therefore the Rural and Regional Development Ministry has allocated RM865.8 million to increase the coverage of these infrastructures,” Jabu said, referring to the five successful projects and programmes.
The Deputy Chief Minister added that four more villages were approved as Sustainable Villages, namely Kampung Tellian, Mukah; Kampung Stass, Kuching; Kampung Tanjung Parang, Samarahan and Kampung Long Bedian, Miri.
Jabu also shared the statistics of the Rural Road Project, including the Village Connection Road Project, where 1,100.87 kilometres of road were built and upgraded at a cost of RM2.20 billion, surpassing the early target by 1,022.69 km.
He also highlighted that as many as 26,716 housing units were built and renovated at a cost of RM430.1 million under the Housing Assistance Programme, with 133,580 hardcore poor and poor benefitting from the programme.