THE next Penang State Assembly meeting in April next year will most likely be held at the newly renovated assembly building in Light Street, George Town.
Work on the RM3.67mil renovation project, which began in March last year, has been completed and officially handed over to the State Secretariat office by the Penang Public Works Department.
State Assembly Speaker Datuk Law Choo Kiang said the proposal to refurbish and upgrade the building was first brought up in 2017 and the state government gave its full confidence to the Works Department to carry out the renovation works.
“The department managed to complete the works even though there were constraints during the movement control order period coupled with other issues of the building being right in the heart
of the George Town Unesco World Heritage site, ” said Law at the State Assembly building handing over ceremony on Thursday.
The handing over ceremony was followed by an official signing ceremony between Penang Public Works Department director Roslan Ismail and deputy State Secretary (administration) Ahmad Rizal Mohd Hanapiah, who represented the State Secretary.
As the building falls under Zone 1 of the Unesco heritage site, extreme care was taken with the renovation works in compliance with the heritage category by strictly following the standard operating procedures.
“I was made to understand that the materials used were of certain quality and sourcing them took a longer time for the completion of the building, ” said Law.
“I hope with the completion of the building, all state assemblymen will be in high spirits, which could contribute to better quality debates, ” said Law.
Law said the safety of the building was of utmost importance and was given top priority during the renovation works, with inclusion of some attractive features.
The works included upgrading of the ceiling and interior decoration inside the hall as well as mechanical and electrical work.
All state assembly meetings during the renovation were held at Dewan Sri Pinang, which was redesigned to accommodate the seating for assemblymen, observers and media personnel.
Several incidents of roof leakage in the past finally led to the renovation of the building in 2019.
The winding-up speech by then state executive councillor Lim Hock Seng in 2015 was disrupted by leaks and several assemblymen scrambled to find a pail to catch rainwater trickling through the ceiling.
In 2011, the state assembly sitting was also briefly disrupted when the ceiling started leaking during a downpour.
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