RM1.2 million to relocate Batang Samarahan ferry traders

Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah (second left) and Samarahan Resident Brahim Lumpu (left) presenting a token of appreciation to Abang Johari.

SAMARAHAN, July 24: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg announced an allocation of RM1.2 million to relocate traders from the old Kota Samarahan ferry wharf to a new location.

This is in view of requests from traders as the number of visitors patronising their businesses has been decreasing since the completion of the Batang Samarahan bridge.

“With that I am announcing an allocation of RM1.2 million to relocate the traders to a new area,” he said, adding that the new location would be determined by the Samarahan Resident Office.

The announcement was made during the Gawai Raya and Sarawak Independence Day celebration at the Kota Samarahan Civic Centre last night.

In his public address, Abang Johari also urged Samarahan residents to stay united despite being from different racial and religious backgrounds as this would ensure the continuity of the development of the district that has been booming over a short period of time.

“Samarahan’s development is booming so fast to the point that current infrastructures are not enough to cope with the ever increasing population.

“That is why I have been announcing various infrastructure development in Samarahan and in areas around it. One is the Batang Samarahan bridge, which would pave access to the coastal areas of Sarawak, and eventually bring more development there,” he said.

Abang Johari also explained the formation of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) was so that the state government through its component parties could make independent decisions free of any outside influence particularly from the political whip of the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

Abang Johari (fourth right) cutting the ‘pulut kuning’ cake together with his wife Datin Patinggi Datuk Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Bujang (fourth left), Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah (third left), Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian (third right) and Assistant Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Snowdan Lawan (second right) and other VIPs to commemorate Sarawak Independence Day.

Also, through GPS, he said the state government could also make decisions independently without relying on the federal government, as only Sarawakian parties would know what was best for Sarawak.

“We can now freely fight for our rights (from the federal government). We start with our oil and gas first by amending the Oil Mining Ordinance 1958 (OMO) where outside oil companies like Petronas must ask for permission first before operating in Sarawak. That is why Petronas is now aggrieved and has brought things to court.

“So we fought them in court and thankfully we won this round. From there, I never looked back and immediately amended the OMO during the last State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting,” said Abang Johari.

He gave assurance that with the state now able to independently make its own decision, the state government will make use of its own oil and gas resources to increase its revenues so that it would be able to increase funds to develop much needed infrastructure in Sarawak.

“Insya Allah the state government will find ways to increase our revenues and I will announce it in our budget next year,” said Abang Johari. — DayakDaily