Keep politics out and we can complete ‘sick projects’ in Sarawak, says minister

Works Minister Baru Bian (right) and Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Douglas Uggah Embas at the press conference after the Sarawak joint action council meeting.

KUCHING: Works Minister Baru Bian says “sick” federal projects in Sarawak must not be politicised to ensure they carry on smoothly for the benefit of the rakyat.

He urged the related state and federal government agencies to collaborate to make sure the projects were completed on schedule.

Among the federal projects categorised as “sick” were the Sri Aman Hospital, the immigration post in Ba Kelalan, the access road to Baleh Dam, two school projects in Miri and the building of the Heart of Borneo Interpretation Centre.

“On average, the projects in Sarawak are 60.5% behind schedule compared with 42.15% in the peninsula.

“About 10% of the projects in Sarawak have been completed.

“We will be prioritising these ‘sick’ projects because they involve funding from the government,” he said after co-chairing the Sarawak joint action council meeting here today.

The delays were due to various factors involving the incompetency of some contractors, he said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Douglas Uggah Embas expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad for appointing him to be the co-chairman to monitor federal government projects in the state.

He said there is a need for the state and federal governments to coordinate to prevent the occurrence of overlapping fund allocations in Sarawak.