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KUCHING, Jan 28: Bintulu MP Dato Sri Tiong King Sing has proposed the 15-metre widening and 1.5-metre deepening of Sg Seduan so that the river water could be efficiently diverted to Sg Merah and then discharged to Sg Igan.
The proposal was laid out during the Sibu Flash Flood Committee meeting held at the Sibu District Office yesterday (Jan 27), attended by several departments including the Department of Irrigation and Drainage (DID), Public Works Department (JKR), Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) and the Sibu Rural District Council (SRDC).
He said Sg Rajang, Igan, or Seduan, have all experienced heavy siltation with Seduan in particular was clogged with soil and weeds, preventing any river water flow at all.
“If Sg Seduan is widened and dug deeper, I believe it can alleviate the problem of inefficient drainage to a certain extent, saving many housing areas from being consistently flooded after only one to two hours of rain, as is occurring now.
“I urged the DID to formulate a plan for this action as soon as possible, to come up with the required costs and the locations to dredge the riverbed,” he said in a statement today.
Tiong who is also Dudong assemblyman further said RM25 million fund allocated by the DID should be used to upgrade the flood mitigation system in Kampung Usaha Jaya including upgrading all mud ditches into concrete drains and monsoon drains.
The designs of these drains, he said, must conform to the terrain so that water may flow from higher to lower levels and be smoothly discharged to Sg Seduan.
As for efforts to elevate roads, he stated that they should be under the purview of the municipal council, village council, or JKR in their respective jurisdictions.
“I also do not agree with a proposal to continue building more pumping stations. The long-term operation of pumping stations will lead to ever higher maintenance costs that do not solve the main problem of inefficient flood drainage,” he said.
He also mentioned that as JKR has identified six major roads that are constantly flooded and need to be elevated namely, Jalan Sg Assan, Jalan Pulau Dudong, Jalan Salim NewAirport, Jalan Kanowit Penyulau and Jalan Kong Yit Khim, the department must submit proposals for these works.
On his part, he said he would discuss with the State leaders to prioritise these projects to get government assistance for immediate implementation.
He also urged all departments present at the meeting yesterday to submit their respective proposals by Feb 14 with a further meeting after Chinese New Year.
“The hydraulic survey for Sungai Rajang and Igan in particular must be completed as soon as possible.
“Once the survey report is completed, I will be inspecting the Igan by boat with the officers from the related departments after the State Assembly Sitting is over to get a clearer picture of the river’s condition,” he emphasised. — DayakDaily