Sunday, April 21

Daro poised for more development — Assemblyman

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Safiee Ahmad

SIBU: Daro, a coastal settlement in Sarawak, is poised for more rapid progress – thanks to better connectivity and vibrant development, including mega projects coming its way.

Daro assemblyman Safiee Ahmad believed better connectivity will spur economic activities including generating job opportunities, thus improving the socio-economy of the people.

He described Daro state constituency as unique, considering that it covers longhouses and villages in four districts – Matu (11 villages and longhouses), Sibu (19), Meradong (25) and Daro itself.

He believed the mega projects announced by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg during his visit to Kampung Penasu, Daro in August last year will spur more development and thrust the constituency forward.

“These mega projects are the construction of 24km of road connecting Tanjung Manis, Sibu, Sebenak and Ilas costing RM65 million; construction of road connecting Kampung Penasu to Nanga Semah spanning about 12km which will connect eight longhouses, one village, a clinic and a school costing RM42 million as well as construction of road from Pasin to Matu, about 16km – connecting seven longhouses in Pasin to Matu by road, costing RM65 million,” he told The Borneo Post via telephone interview yesterday.

Safiee further disclosed that a total of three Sarawak Alternative Water Supply (Sawas) projects in Daro had been completed, namely for 86 families and one boarding school, as well as eight longhouses, one school and one clinic in Nanga Semah besides four longhouses in Sungai Seban.

In addition, a few more projects had been approved for 2019/2020, he noted.

Touching on the mega bridges for Daro – Batang Lassa and Batang Paloh bridges – he said when completed the ferry service would be a thing of the past.

“That means if you are coming from Sibu or from anywhere else,  there is no more ferry (service in future). All will be connected by bridges.

“Indeed, better connectivity will be open up the coastal area and people will benefit from the development,” he added.

He believed that when completed these bridges will not only spur more economic development for Daro but also the surrounding areas such as Matu, Jemoreng and Semop.

Safiee said he was informed that the letter of award for Batang Lassa bridge costing more than RM500 million might be out sometime in March.

He was also elated to note several communication towers had been erected in his constituency and had been commissioned.

He added that one more communication tower will be erected at Batang Lassa area for better communication including internet connectivity.

According to Safiee, eight longhouses in Batang Lassa (under Sibu district) have been connected to Sibu by road since last Gawai. He said the plantation road is being upgraded to gravel road using funding from his Rural Transformation Programme (RTP).

He recalled that the people used to travel to Sibu on a two-hour boat journey, depending on water level, but now they can reach Sibu by road in about one hour.

Likewise, the people of Rumah Geruka and Rumah Selat (under Matu district) can now reach Daro in less than one hour.

On Rural Electrification Scheme (RES), Safiee disclosed that seven longhouses along Sungai Ilas, Sungai Mabil and Sungai Stubah  under Meradong district were connected with 24-hour electricity (grid line) last year.

Other exciting development happenings in Daro include the RM4-million Medan Selera which is under construction.

As for Daro community hall costing about RM2 million, it is about 50 per cent completed, the assemblyman said. He also mentioned that the Daro district mosque costing RM9.5 million is now at the tender stage.

“Every time during functions, I would tell the people to be ready for the development coming their way and that they should not be spectators.

“They should participate in the development as with good road infrastructure, the area will be opened up. People have the opportunity to develop their land for agriculture to generate income,” Safiee said.