Dayak contractors want share in highway project

Kilat (fourth left) hands over a memento to Safuani as Leonard (third left) and others look on.

KUCHING: Dayak contractors still hope to be a given a significant portion from of the 30 per cent value of contracts meant for Bumiputera participation in the Pan Borneo Highway Project.

Chairman of Dayak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) works committee Leonard Martin Uning said it was crucial for Dayak contractors to participate in the project as they were really keen to share and be a part of this big national development.

He said more than 30 Dayak contractors and consultants held a lively discussion with Lebuhraya Borneo Utara Sdn Bhd (LBU) chief executive officer Ir Safuani Abdul Hamid on the matter recently.

LBU is a Sarawakian company entrusted and mandated by the federal government to plan, organise and undertake the construction of the more than 1,000km Pan Borneo Highway from Tanjung Dato in Sarawak to Merapok in Sabah.

“We had a lively discussion on various aspects of planning, proposed implementation processes and the technical expertise required for finding and working out ways and how Bumiputera especially Dayak contractors can participate
in the project and not as spectators.

“This is so that they can be given a portion of the 30 per cent value of the Pan Borneo Highway Project meant for
Bumiputera participation,” said Leonard.

The DCCI delegation to the discussion, held at LBU headquarters here on Wednesday, was led by DCCI deputy president Kilat Beriak.

When tabling the Budget 2015 last year Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the government would continue building the 1,6663km Pan Borneo Highway comprising 936km in Sarawak and 727km in Sabah at a cost of RM27 billion.

Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof has also announced that the Pan Borneo Highway would be built under the Public Private Partnership Unit of the Prime Minister’s Department (Ukas) using the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) method.

Fadillah was quoted in the media as saying that Ukas’ initiative was to speed up implementation of the project – to upgrade the present trunk road into a dual carriageway.

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