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By Lian Cheng
JULAU, Nov 17: Sarawak Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg has announced the approval of the building of a new gas station, multipurpose hall, and Julau waterfront, apart from the installation of high level water tanks worth RM24 million on Mount Agong, Julau, which will benefit residents of 58 longhouses.
He announced this at Gabungan Parti Sarawak’s (GPS) ‘Meet the People’ session in Julau town, following the requests of Meluan assemblyman Rolland Duat Rubin.
The lawmaker had pointed out at the session that there is an urgent need to build a gas station at Julau which is something that its people have long been waiting for.
“Because the people here, they have to go buy petrol at Sibu Jaya. The cost of getting the petrol is more expensive than the petrol they buy. So I ask only for one petrol station, not two, just one,” said Duat.
Duat then presented the need to have a multipurpose hall in Julau which may serve as a trading place for petty hawkers who have been conducting their businesses at five-foot-ways.
The hall may also house dry and wet markets on the first floor, and eateries on the top floor.
On the final design, he left it to the relevant authorities but mentioned that the project may cost around RM15 million.
Duat also brought up the water shortage issue faced by residents of 58 longhouses along Jalan Meluan to Nanga Entabai, where he suggested that a high level water tank be installed on Mount Agong to solve the issue.
The RM76 million project, he said, has been approved by the Regional Development Ministry of the Federal government but it has yet to be implemented as the project was stopped at the tendering stage.
In response to Duat’s suggestion of building a petrol station, Abang Johari gave the nod since the number of cars in Julau has increased tremendously.
“We will build a petrol station here because there are many cars in Julau. SEDC Energy will do that. The company can work together with the locals. Local people can look after the station,” said Abang Johari.
On Duat’s suggestion of the construction of a multipurpose hall, Abang Johari said Julau is under the Rajang Delta Development Authority which he had previously allocated RM1.5 billion for infrastructure, and that there was no issue in allocating RM15 million for the building of a multipurpose hall.
On the building of Julau waterfront, he said many districts such as Saratok, Kabung, Spoah and Matu had requested for one, so he also approved for one to be built in Julau.
Meanwhile on the water shortage issue, Abang Johari said he had approved RM24 million to upgrade the water distribution system covering Jalan Meluan to Nanga Entabai.
“We have the financial ability and we will give it back to the people. And JBALB (Rural Water Development) will handle the project. We can’t depend on Regional Development Ministry which ‘now you see them, now you don’t’. This is their problem,” said Abang Johari.
Also present were Natural Resources and Urban Development Deputy Minister Datuk Len Talif, Pakan assemblyman Tan Sri William Mawan, GPS Julau candidate Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum and Deputy State Secretary Dr Mohd Abdullah Zaidel. — DayakDaily