Saturday, August 15

Government to increase manpower to improve RTP delivery

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THE Government acknowledges there are some shortcomings in the implementation of Rural Transformation Programme (RTP) projects, and is therefore taking several initiatives to strengthen its (RTP) management to improve the delivery system.

Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development, Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah said a number of elected representatives were complaining of the delay in the RTP project implementation.

“Each state constiuency is allocated RM5 million for major village projects and after complaining to chief minister, new approaches have been undertaken, h he said when met at his office yesterday.

This, he added, included revamping certain standard operating procedures (SOPs) by establishing dedicated RTP units at divisional JKR offices, comprising eRTP units with Design Function f in three major divisions (Kuching, Sibu and Miri) and eRTP units without Design Function f in other divisions. Uggah said the main agenda was how to speed up the implementation of RTP projects while improving quality.

“JKR and district offices throughout Sarawak will be upgraded with more engineers and architects to look after RTP projects, and to solve the lack of manpower.”

To strengthen the capacity in JKR divisional and district offices, he said the creation of 239 professional/technical posts on Jawatan Berasaskan Caruman (JBC) basis had been approved by the government.

The approved posts consist of 86 engineers grade J41, 6 architects grade J41, 12 quantity surveyors grade J41, 99 assistant engineers grade JA29, 24 draughtsman/assistant architect grade JA29 and 12 assistant quantity surveyors grade JA29 for a contract period of two years (one-off);

On complaint over the frequent changes of projects, Uggah admitted it involved 2,168 projects or 45 per cent of the total 4,836 projects – comprising changes in project scope, cost and location.

“In the past, changes must be approved by State Implementation Monitoring Unit in Kuching. Now, if the cost does not change the power is vested with the Resident, h he said.

Uggah said an audit committee would be set up to monitor the quality of workmanship but appealed to all community leaders to play their roles as the eyes and ears of the government.