CM to discuss issue of rundown schools in state with PM

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg - file pic

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KUCHING: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg is meeting with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, among other things, to discuss the issue of dilapidated schools in Sarawak.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan who represented Abang Johari at the opening of the 4th Sarawak Business and Investment Summit event themed “Digitising Sarawak, Amplifiying Growth” at a local hotel here, revealed this when he apologised on behalf of the chief minister for the latter’s absence.

Later, when Awang Tengah was met by reporters, he added that the chief minister will announce what transpired from the meeting later when the latter returned to the state.

“The most important thing is to make sure that all dilapidated schools can be rebuilt and repaired,” he said, adding that the state government saw this issue as of utmost importance.

Meanwhile, Second Finance Minister Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh was approached with the question of whether the state government could foot the bill for the repair of the dilapidated schools first and later offset the sum from the debt the state government owes to the federal government.

Wong replied if the federal government failed to pay the state government the expenses incurred in repairing schools, the amount will be subtracted from what is owed.

“If the federal government is unable to pay us, then we will contra. But it is going to be an accounting procedure. We have to look into it.

“I hope it will not happen. Definitely, the federal government will pay us,” said Wong.

He said it would not be a simple process as there would be treasury instructions and accounting procedures to follow.