SEBUYAU: Assistant Minister of Coastal Road Datuk Julaihi Narawi hopes Works Minister Baru Bian can convince federal government leaders on the real need for the construction of Batang Lupar bridge which is a very important link and strategic for Sarawak’s coastal road project.
Julaihi said Baru was very positive during a recent discussion with the state Public Works Department (JKR) about the project.
“We do hope that Baru can talk not only in Sarawak, but also being a Sarawakian to bring the matter for discussion and convince the leaders at the federal level for the project to be continued on 50-50 per cent funding.
“Let us forget about our political ideology and affiliation because what is important is the need of the people in rural areas,” Julaihi pointed out on Saturday.
He had earlier officiated at Sebuyau Traditional Food 2018 cooking competition at Dewan Pembangunan Sebuyau.
According to Julaihi, who is the Sebuyau assemblyman, the federal government has written a letter to defer the Batang Lupar bridge project, but the state government has decided to continue with it as announced by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg when the latter tabled the State Budget 2019
Julaihi said it was mentioned during the discussion with Baru that the state government would continue with the project and the 50 per cent allocation is to be reimbursed by the federal government in the 12th Malaysia Plan.
He disclosed that the actual length of the bridge is 5.1 km, while the cable stay is about 710 metres.
“What we want is for the federal government to honour the 50 per cent on the bridge and let the state government come up with the cable stay,” he stressed.
He further said that the state government would want the project to start next year if possible, adding that the cost of the project would depend on the open tender.