Repair of dilapidated Sarawak schools began on Aug 5 – Guan Eng

PUTRAJAYA, The project to repair dilapidated schools in Sarawak began in earnest on Aug 5, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said today.

He said the claim by Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg that he (Lim) said a rehabilitation project committee should be set up is not true.

Four special committees at the federal government level were set up on March 19 to implement and monitor the project, he said in a statement.

He said the statement by Abang Johari seemed to be negating the effort of the federal government to implement and expedite the project, by taking into account the application and need of the Sarawak government.

Abang Johari yesterday reportedly urged the federal government to begin repairing dilapidated schools in Sarawak, saying the state government has settled its RM350-million debt as required by the Ministry of Finance.

Lim said the debt was repaid on Aug 8 but the Ministry of Finance had issued a letter dated Aug 5 to allow the Ministry of Education to carry out the preliminary work on the project.

On Aug 14, the Ministry of Finance issued another letter to the Ministry of Education to inform that the payment from the Sarawak government had been received and asked for the appropriate measures to be taken to expedite the implementation of the first phase of the project.

The Federal Government also made an exception in approving the application of the Sarawak government so that the project to repair the schools is monitored by the Sarawak Public Works Department (JKR) and priority is given to local contractors operating in Sarawak.

In addition, the selection of dilapidated schools takes into account the priorities of the Sarawak government, he said.

Lim also said that the Sarawak JKR had also identified seven schools whereby the tender was advertised today and the tender for the remaining 30 projects to be issued at the end of October 2019.

Source: BERNAMA (News Agency)