Jiwa Murni roads not pound foolish when serving purpose of providing connectivity

Andy Lawrence

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KUCHING: With all constraints especially limited budget, Jiwa Murni roads are the most practical answer in providing connectivity to rural folks.

Parti Rakyat Sarawak Youth information chief Andy Lawrence pointed out that roads under the Malaysian Army Jiwa Murni programme are just basic roads.

“It is an initiative of the government to provide connectivity to the rural areas, by optimising the limited budget allocated.”

“Of course the Jiwa Murni road standard is below the R1 standard. It is anyway not meant for heavy vehicles.”

“Eventually it will be maintained and upgraded. With all the constraints our approach must be practical and systematic,” said Andy in a press statement yesterday in rebutting PKR youth information chief Simon Siah’s statement “PRS Youth shooting blanks at Jiwa Murni issue, says PKR youth” published on Dayakdaily on Sept 14.

Andy believed that when the Jiwa Murni roads serve to provide connectivity which is most crucial to the lives of those in the rural areas, it has not been a pound foolish penny wise decision to build these roads.

File photo: Jiwa Murni Road linking Belaga and Bintulu looking fine and decent if the road is not being used by heavy laden vehicles.
Part of the Jiwa Murni road connecting Bakelalan to Lawas that has been damaged by heavy trucks.

“This is not a pound foolish decision. Unless Siah or Baru (Bian, state PKR chairman who is also Bakelalan state assemblyman) could offer some practical solutions to get our rural areas mint condition road connectivity, lets hear them out,” said Andy.

Andy said roads built under Jiwa Murni programme so far have brought positive impacts to people living at secluded rural areas.

“The Army’s efforts should be commended and encouraged. But should there be any shortfall, it must be improved upon. That is what true leaders do unless YB Baru and Simon are more interested in politicising this Jiwa Murni effort to gain their political mileage and undermine our Army’s efforts.”

“Maybe their (PKR) concept is to build mint roads, or leave the rural folk with no accessibility at all?” questioned Andy.

He said there has been no need for Simon to rave about federalism concept or federal tax.

“He missed my point. I am talking about something simpler than that.”

“Rather than just criticising it, YB Baru and Simon should be more proactive by requesting financial assistant from Pakatan Harapan through Selangor and Penang governments to help improve the rural communities socio-economic and basic infrastructural development, for the good of the people under PKR’s constituencies, as an additional improvement to what BN government gave.”

“But I am also wondering, while YB Baru and Simon condemned this Jiwa Murni road, it seems that they are okay with those heavy trucks prowling over the areas, abusing the road.”

“We didn’t hear any of them condemning these truckers or companies. Is there something out there that we don’t know?” asked Andy.