KUCHING: The State Government will proceed with the proposed RM1 billion Batang Lupar Bridge Project.

Assistant Minister of Coastal Roads Datuk Julaili Narawi said the project had earlier been approved for construction with the cost split evenly at 50 percent between the State and Federal Governments.

“However, the implementation of the project was deferred by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) Federal Government as informed through a letter from the Ministry of Works dated 24 August 2018,” he said in reply to question from Tuan Haji Razili Gapor (GPS-Bering Maro).

Julaihi said based on the briefing between the Minister of Works and State Public Works Department (JKR) on 6 November 2018, the Minister of Works received State JKR’s suggestion positively; especially on the RM400 million contribution from the Federal Government under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) including submitting the matter for discussion and further consideration by the Federal Government.

“However, based on the basis of concern and prioritising the needs of the rural people, on 5 November 2018 the Chief Minister had announced that the State Government had agreed to finance the construction of the bridge.

“However, we are still hoping that the Federal Government, through the Minister of Works, can honour and assure the PH Federal Government to continue to finance the construction of the Batang Lupar Bridge, although the Sarawak Government agreed to finance the construction of said bridge,” he said.

Meanwhile, on the Batang Saribas Bridge and Sungai Krian Bridge, he informed that both bridges were approved and financed fully by the State Government through the Coastal Connectivity Programme.

Both bridges will be tendered by the end of this year and the construction is expected to commence by the first quarter of 2019.

The Batang Lupar Bridge will include the construction of a 5.1km cable-stayed bridge totalling 710m long, prestressed balance cantilever totalling 4.39km long, and a 5.7km road on the side of the bridge at Kampung Sebuyau and at Kampung Triso.

In reply to Dennis Ngau (GPS-Telang Usan) on the progress of the construction of the Long Lama Bridge Project, he said the project is progressing smoothly with its current achievement of 87.6 percent against the scheduled 90.2 percent.

The project, fully funded by the Sarawak Government for a contract sum of RM67,109,453.37, commenced construction on 10 February 2016; the revised completion date is 31 March 2019 and is scheduled to open to the public in April 2019.

On the proposed Marudi Bridge, he said it has been approved under the Chief Minister’s Walkabout Project and informed that the project has been tendered on 3 November 2018 with construction scheduled to commence in the first quarter of 2019.

The estimated cost of the Marudi Bridge Project is RM90 million which will include the construction of a 650m concrete bridge and a road along the length of 1.1km.