MACC finds no element of corruption in RM50,000 wooden jetty project

The 15-metre long wooden jetty at Kampung Mutap Bekenu was completed on April 1, 2022 after a month of construction. Photo from 'Corporate Communication JKR Sarawak' Facebook page.

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KUCHING, April 12: A Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigation into the RM50,000 wooden jetty project at Kampung Mutap in Bekenu did not find any element of corruption.

In a statement issued today, it was revealed MACC headquarters instructed its Sarawak office to look into the project under the Public Works Department (JKR) Sarawak, following allegations of expensive costs incurred in the construction of the wooden jetty.

According to sources, no evidence of malpractice or corruption was found in the investigation.

In addition, an expert’s inspection also confirmed that the wood used is genuinely belian timber.

Meanwhile, MACC senior director of Investigation Hishamuddin Hashim when contacted confirmed the matter but declined to comment further.

JKR Sarawak recently drew harsh criticism for the wooden jetty project following allegations it was not constructed according to its allocated budget.

On April 8, photos of the completed 15-metre-long wooden jetty went viral on social media with netizens expressing their shock over the outcome of the project which cost RM50,000.

On Sunday (April 10), JKR has explained that the belian wooden jetty was agreed upon after its proposal to build a steel jetty was rejected by the village head as steel cost more compared to belian timber which in turn would result in a smaller jetty.

As such, the village chief requested that a 30-metre-long jetty be built complete with a wooden ‘pondok’ (shelter).

However, JKR informed the village chief that this was not possible due to the limited budget. Thus, the village chief agreed to let JKR design the jetty according to the allocated budget and would request more funds from the local elected representative to carry out a second phase for the project.

JKR Sarawak also informed that the wooden jetty is a Rural Transformation Programme (RTP) project and the cost estimated was based on the Schedule Rate for the year 2020 with the rate of RM9,000 per metre cube for the belian timber used for construction, which is also lower than the market rate.

The estimation also took into account the difficulty in accessing the site which is by plantation road, logistics and safety concerns as the area is infested with crocodiles. — DayakDaily