PH cutting off funding or it would be 100% electrification for Batu Danau

Paulus speaking to D’Drift at Kampung Kuala Medalam longhouse.

By D’Drift Team 

MIRI, July 7: Batu Danau constituency would have reached 100 per cent electrification if not for the previous Pakatan Harapan (PH) government which had cut off the funding, leaving four longhouse settlements still not connected to the grid.

Batu Danau assemblyman Paulus Palu Gumbang pointed out that the remainder of the longhouses which have yet to be connected to the main grid were Rumah Jampung, Kampung Melawai, Kampung Akang Sirang and Rumah Lembung.

“As for electricity to kampung and longhouses, there are only four longhouses yet to be covered. If all these four projects were to be completed, we would have achieved almost 100 per cent electrification. 

“We are supposed to have all these covered, but unfortunately, during the last election, there was a change of government, so a number of these projects which were under construction, the funding was cancelled by the PH government.

“Some of them are already like 92 per cent completion, like Rumah Jampung (60 doors), then the funding was cut off, the project was stopped abruptly. It is just a few more doors to be completed and the internal wiring was all done,” Paulus told D’Drift Team at Kampung Kuala Medalam longhouse yesterday.

For areas which were even more in the interior such as Penan settlements of Long Lape, Kampung Bahagia, Long Laya, he revealed that electricity will be provided for them under Sares (Sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme) where solar system will be installed.

Within the constituency, there were over 100 villages including more than 10 Penan settlements.

What Batu Danau was lacking, according to Paulus who is also Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) Backbenchers Club chairman, was treated water.

However, under Northern Region Development Agency (NRDA), four packages of water treated projects were in store for the next five years.

Package 1 involved treated water project from Simpang Pekalamatan to Simpang Ukong; Package 2, from Simpang Kong to Tanah Merah to Rumab Jubang; Package 3 from Pekan Medamit to Rumah Alim, Pulau Brunei and Package 4, from Simpang Semana to Kuala Medalam.

Paulus emphasised that since the Sarawak government started to disburse Rural Transformation Project (RTP) fund worth RM5 million per year since 2015, development has been accelerated in Batu Danau constituency.

“For Batu Danau alone, from 2015, as many as 276 minor projects implemented. A lot of kampung and longhouses have community halls, futsal courts and feeder roads.

“Comparatively, we are doing quite well. There is still a lot of development needed to be continued and implemented. In term of accessibility, the only longhouse having a bit of problem is Rumah Lembung,” he added.— DayakDaily