By Karen Bong and Chris Bishop
SIMUNJAN, Aug 20: RM79 million has been approved to construct a new landscape retaining wall to resolve serious erosion problems and beautify Simunjan town.
In announcing this funding today, Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said the comprehensive project under the Integrated Regional Samarahan Development Agency (IRSDA) would be carried out in three phases with the first phase to start in six months.
“Earlier on, I was given a thorough briefing in which all the needs and requests required funding. First off is the erosion problem in Simunjan.
“I have instructed the DID (Department of Irrigation and Drainage) to conduct a study on building a more solid and effective river wall so that the structure will not easily collapse like the previous one.
“The engineers have done a detailed study, and finally, we will build a new retaining wall with a stronger foundation and deeper trench that could hold off better. The cost is also quite substantial — RM79 million,” he said when officiating at the Simunjan Esplanade, which was broadcast live through Ukas YouTube Channel today.
Elaborating on the project’s scope, Abang Johari explained that a river channel would also be constructed into Simunjan with a lake for water retention during high tide and release during low tide, which could lower the pressure against the retaining wall.
“This must be done. I will return to visit to check on the project’s progress.
“When completed, this area (Esplanade) and Awla (Dris, who is Simunjan assemblyman) will be even more attractive,” he added.
Abang Johari also approved an additional RM3 million requested by Awla for roofing and landscaping works to beautify the Waterfront of Simunjan town.
As for the retaining wall project to prevent erosion at Kampung Sageng Sabal and Kampung Sageng Hulu costing about RM20 million, he said it would be included under DID, which will involve a total cost of about RM100 million.
“We will improve and upgrade all the infrastructure in Simunjan. This is what we have planned for Simunjan, I hope we will continue to safeguard our unity and continue all efforts to develop Simunjan, including Gedong next door,” he said.
Minister of Utility and Telecommunication Datuk Julaihi Narawi, Federal Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture and Batang Sadong MP Dato Sri Nancy Shukri, Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Port Development Ir Aidel Lariwoo, State Secretary Dato Sri Abu Bakar Marzuki and Kota Samarahan MP Datuk Rubiah Wang were among those present. — DayakDaily