By Geryl Ogilvy
KUCHING, Dec 18: The newly-completed health clinic in Bintawa, to benefit some 16,000 people from 12 villages in the Boyan-Gersik area, is expected to commence operation next February.
Santubong MP Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar expressed content that the project had finally materialised after it was cancelled by the federal government last year.
The new health clinic will replace the existing facility, which has been written off and certified unsafe by the Public Works Department.
“The state took over the project after the fund allocated by the previous federal government in 2017 was cancelled, following a change in government after the May 2018 general election.
“The previous (federal) budget was RM450,000. When the project was cancelled, we take over and the state approved RM600,000 under the RTP (Rural Transformation Programme) to build the clinic,” he told reporters after visiting the clinic here today.
Wan Junaidi also pledged to allocate another RM300,000 from his RTP grant to build a car park and fencing for the clinic.
He said the government embarked on building the new clinic in 2004. Land acquisition at its new site was approved in 2013 at Kampung Bintawa, as part of the Darul Hana development initiative.
Following the completion of the clinic, the state Public Works Department will discuss placement of health personnel and equipment with the Health Ministry, he continued.
Currently, equipment from the previous clinic is placed at the Tanah Puteh Health Clinic, he added.
“We will ensure they are transferred to Bintawa health clinic once the new building is fully ready. It is inconvenient for the villagers to cross Sarawak River and go all the way to Tanah Puteh to seek medical attention,” he said.
Among the villages that will benefit from the new health clinic are Semarang, Panglima Seman, Pulo, Bintawa Hulu, Bintawa Tengah and Bintawa Hilir.
Kuching Health officer Dr Azlee Ayub said about 12 personnel will be stationed at the Bintawa health clinic, including two medical officers.
ends // with pix…
P1: (from right) Dr Azlee and Wan Junaidi witnessing the handing over of the building between the contractor and Public Works Department.
P2: The Bintawa health clinic is expected to begin operation in February 2020.