AFTER just a decade, the impressive cyber-age government buildings in Putrajaya are already showing signs of wear-and-tear, and repair and restoration work is certainly needed urgently.
One of the victims of such a deteriorated condition is the Palace of Justice in Precinct 3.
The complex is regal in bearing and favoured as a backdrop during celebrations like the Merdeka Parade and New Year Countdown or for film and wedding shoots, but, unfortunately, some of its outer parts are crumbling away.
Tiles on the stairs to the main complex are chipped or broken. In one corner, a vertical slab was missing, revealing the unsightly layer of cement below.
Looking up at the splendid structure, one can see ugly patches on the ceiling, caused by water seepage.
Some students who were working on a photography project at the site told StarMetro that they were thankful that the five domes and the building with its impressive pillars were still imposing and impressive.
During a 90-minute walk within the Core Island, home to many ministries, government departments and public agencies, StarMetro discovered several other anomalies that certainly require immediate remedy.
One obvious example is the leaking fire hydrant at the back of the Land and Minerals Department next to the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry in Precinct 4.
Two other cases are the broken pavement near the Customs Department in Precinct 2 and the uneven road surface in front of the Perbadanan Putrajaya (PPj) Complex in Precinct 3.
One concrete chunk was missing along a section of the Boulevard from Dataran Putra to the Core Island, posing a danger to road users, especially motorcyclists.
The National Registration Department (NRD) building in Precinct 2 has been cordoned off for maintenance work. It is unclear what work is being done there.
According to a recent visitor to Putrajaya, Peter Ho, the Immigration Department building in Precinct 2 seemed under-utilised.
“An entire floor is vacant. For a new building, I would expect more and thought the services would be more centralised,” he said.
The Immigration Department in Putrajaya deals with matters related to foreign workers and expatriates.
When contacted, Putrajaya Corporation (PPj) city services director Datuk Ghani Ahmad said the maintenance of government office buildings was generally the responsibility of the Public Works Department (PWD).
“The PPj maintains the public amenities like neighbourhood complexes, sports facilities, bus stops, park-and-ride sites and the Putrajaya Sentral,” he said.
Meanwhile, PPj president Tan Sri Samsudin Osman said Putrajaya should last for the next 100 years and the corporation was taking the necessary measures to preserve and maintain the nation’s administration capital for posterity.
In 2007, after a string of misadventure involving the government buildings in Putrajaya, the then Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu was reported as saying that it would cost RM22mil just to carry out checks.
The most ruinous incident was the massive leak at the Immigration Department building where operations had to be suspended as the result of a burst pipe. The incident was blamed on poor workmanship and maintenance.
Later, the roof of an auditorium in the Entrepreneurial and Cooperative Development Ministry building collapsed.
This led to the Auditor-General’s Department to conduct an audit on the safety and maintenance of the government buildings.
The percentage of land use in Putrajaya is divided into government (5.3%), commercial (2.9%), residential (25.8%), civic and cultural (0.2%), public facilities (10.1%), utility and infrastructure (18.2%) and green area (37.5%).
Putrajaya Holdings Sdn Bhd (PjH) is the master developer of Putrajaya and the development of the government buildings was carried out privately on a build-lease-transfer basis.