Baru: Decision on project delivery partner (PDP) model `very soon’

Baru fielding questions from reporters.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, June 8: The Federal Cabinet is expected to announce its decision on the project delivery partner (PDP) model for the Pan Borneo Highway “very soon”.

Works Minister Baru Bian said this after a Pakatan Harapan (PH) Sarawak meeting at the Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sarawak headquarters here today.

“For Sarawak, we wait for a while more as there will be an announcement on whether to continue with the model or not by the cabinet very soon,” he said.

Sabah, on the other hand, has dropped the PDP model for new approaches to better manage the building of the roads without private sector involvement.

Construction of the dual-carriageway Pan Borneo Highway, which spans 2,325km, is expected to be completed by 2023 in Sarawak and by 2025 in Sabah.

On a related development, Baru, who is also Selangau MP and Ba’ Kelalan assemblyman, pledged to work hard to ensure that the Sabah-Sarawak Link Road project could be realised in his current term as Minister of Works.

“I am hopeful with this new plan, which will connect Long Lama to Lawas until Sipitang in Sabah. Presently, most roads in Ba’ Kelalan constituency are still logging roads,” he lamented.

“It is very important for Sarawak, as I see the northern part of Sarawak, with the interior of Miri, Lawas and Limbang, as the last frontier not connected by infrastructure.”

Baru revealed that preliminary work to look at the alignment had started, and this would be followed by soil investigation. The project was tendered out last month.

“With this planning, including the spur roads, it will help Limbang flourish,” he assured.

On the appointment of Latheefa Koya as the new Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief, he opined that the legality of the appointment should not be questioned as it was proper according to the law.

“The prerogative is with the prime minister,” he said, stressing that what was most important was for MACC to be effective, has integrity, neutrality and commitment to prosecute.

“But then, of course, in the light of the PH manifesto, that’s why there are all these criticisms but, otherwise, it is lawful and is a proper appointment.

“We should give Latheefa the time to prove herself because, at the end of the day, what we want is an institution that is effective, neutral and credible,” he said. — DayakDaily