PH axed projects meant for basic needs, say Sarawak leaders

Santubong MP Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar.

KUCHING: Sarawak leaders, chiding DAP for labelling Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) a “crybaby” over the cancellation of development projects, said that the projects were the basic needs of the people such as water supply and flood mitigation.

Santubong MP Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said it was ridiculous for Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen to make comparisons with projects in the peninsula.

He said the ones in Sarawak were mainly to meet the people’s essential needs.

“You cannot compare these mega projects with the flood mitigation project in Sebuyau, where the whole village is affected by floods every year.

“You also cannot compare them with the RM127 million worth of projects meant to resolve water problems in my constituency in Tasik Biru, Semantan and Lundu, which were cancelled by the PH government. Water is an essential commodity. Everybody needs water.

“He (Chong) called us a crybaby. He is living in the city. He doesn’t understand because he doesn’t see houses being destroyed by floods and erosion,” Wan Junaidi told FMT.

On Friday, Chong urged GPS not to be a “crybaby” over the cancellation of development projects in the state, saying it was necessary because the federal government wanted to save the country from bankruptcy.

“This is a national effort. If you look at the figures involved, the cut in budget (for projects) in the peninsula is a lot more than the cut for projects in Sarawak,” he said.

Wan Junaidi said the development budget for the state from 2013 to 2017 had already been substantially reduced.

“We have no objections against development projects in other states but the federal government should also not cancel projects in Sarawak,” he said.

He also asked what would happen to the RM10 million rock development project in Kampung Buntal, which was expected to be completed by this year.

“There are nearly half a billion ringgit worth of projects to curb erosion in Sarawak. We’re not sure what is going to happen to them,” he said.

He reminded the federal government that the projects were based on their studies conducted two to three years earlier to protect the villagers’ homes from being submerged.

Batang Sadong MP Nancy Shukri said DAP should not resort to labelling others. She said development projects in Sarawak should not be treated like those in the peninsula.

“We are still far behind in terms of infrastructure. The projects that have been cancelled are basic infrastructure for the people in the rural areas,” she said.