8/11/2012: Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) today urged the Rural and Regional Ministry to build roads in his rural constituency, fearing that his constituents may be swayed by opposition promises to do so if they win.
“The opposition is coming to my constituency and saying that BN has failed to build the roads after 55 years and that they will do so if they win.
“Help convince me (that these roads will be built) so I can convince my voters,”
he said during Question Time.
Bung had asked the rural and regional minister to state the status of the applications for the construction of the Kampung Sinar Jaya, Kampung Keramuak, Kampung Kuamat and Kampung Balat roads.
“It’s very difficult for the villagers, especially in this monsoon season, and communications among villages can be cut off,” he said.
In response, deputy minister Joseph Entulu said that as much as he would like to do so , the budget for rural roads do no permit it.
The government has allocated RM4.5 billion to reduce the urban-rural development gap, including building 441 kilometres of rural roads nationwide under the 2013 Budget.
In a supplementary question, Azmin Ali (PKR-Gombak) asked if the government would consider awarding road construction contracts through open tender to reduce costs, considering the limited funds.
To this, the deputy minister said that he “understands that Pakatan Rakyat awards contracts via selected tender sand direct negotiations”.
“The ministry is already using this (open tender)…So there is no need to teach ducks to swim,” he said.