KUCHING (Jan 8): The works on the delay-plagued Petra Jaya Hospital are now progressing well, according to Deputy Health Minister Lukanisman Awang Sauni.
He says with the rescue contractor having taken charge of the project, the works progress now stands at 51 per cent nearing completion
“Overall, the roof works are almost complete. This is the place that requires heavy work.
“I have also been briefed on the latest progress of the project, which is now at 51 per cent nearing completion.
“The rescue contractor achieved real physical progress at 25.78 per cent, as at Dec 30 last year.
“This is a positive development because the works progress is ahead of the original schedule by one month,” he told reporters at a press conference held after having conducted the inspection on Petra Jaya Hospital project site yesterday.
The hospital is expected to be completed on Nov 25 next year, and fully operational by 2025.
Adding on, Lukanisman said the government was aware of the problems faced by contractors, especially the shortage of foreign workers.
This, he said, had prompted the relevant government agencies to continue their close monitoring over the project so as to ensure that the works would meet the deadline.
“It is a huge responsibility for the JKR (Public Works Department) and the contractor in ensuring that this project would be completed on time, on Nov 25, 2024.
“But at the same time, we also understand the challenges, especially those related to labour shortage.
“This said, I have been informed that our rescue contractors are fine – they have adequate numbers of workers.”
Asked whether the Petra Jaya Hospital project would be handed to JKR Sarawak, Lukanisman said he had raised the matter to the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) technical committee.
“Our Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof has stated that the MA63 committee is in the process of negotiating matters pertaining to (Sarawak’s) autonomy in health and education, and one of the components of our proposal for health autonomy is that we recommend to the committee which project is appropriate to be administered by the state,” he said.
Previously, Petra Jaya Hospital was listed as a ‘sick project’, having been down with serious setbacks including the termination of the previous contractor in 2018 for continuously failing to complete the works according to schedule.
The RM600-million project, which commenced in 2013, was supposed to reach completion in November 2016, but as at June 2018, the works progress stood at only 35.4 per cent – resulting it in being listed as among the ‘sick projects’ in Sarawak then.