Yes to 3rd bridge but crooked bridge not a priority, says Liew

Liew Chin Tong. (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: DAP strategist Liew Chin Tong says the party is supportive of the idea of a third bridge to neighbouring Singapore, but that a crooked bridge as mooted by Dr Mahathir Mohamad during his first tenure as prime minister is not an “immediate priority”.

Speaking to reporters at the Parliament lobby, Liew, who is deputy defence minister, said it was important to ensure that traffic flow on both sides of the causeway is smooth, adding that this was what the government should focus on.

“We also think there is a need to speed up construction of the Johor Bahru–Singapore Rapid Transit System linking Singapore rail facilities to Johor,” he said, adding that travellators or moving walkways would help speed up travel as well.

“The crooked bridge is not an immediate agenda,” he said when asked to comment on reports that Johor Menteri Besar Osman Sapian had proposed the revival of the idea.

Mahathir mooted the crooked bridge idea at the tail-end of his first tenure as prime minister from 1981 to 2003.

He said Malaysia would build a crooked bridge – a six-lane, S-shaped highway curving to allow the passage of ships below it – if Singapore refused to demolish its half of the causeway.

His successor, Abdullah Badawi, decided against the project, as did Najib Razak who succeeded Abdullah.

Liew said any idea could be considered, but immediate issues should be the focus.

“This is why DAP is prepared to support the idea of a third bridge. But we think that the crooked bridge is not an immediate priority.”