PENANG: The termite-infested state legislative building will be repaired within six months at a cost of RM200,000, state assembly Speaker Datuk Yahaya Hamid said yesterday.
Repairs to the century-old heritage building was urgently needed because the roof truss had moved a few centimetres downwards, he said.
“The wooden beams are damaged by termites and water. We have to take immediate action as we do not want the roof to collapse on anyone,” Yahaya told a press conference at Dewan Sri Pinang.
The state has chosen the “dewan” as the temporary venue for the state assembly sitting scheduled to be held next month.
Yahaya said that between 2002 and last year, nine minor repair works were carried out on the building at a total cost of RM275,000.
In the last three years, repairs to the building had included fixing the leaking roof and damaged gutter, replacing faulty doors, and upgrading the facilities, including the chief minister’s and deputy chief minister’s offices.
“Repairing the roof truss can be tedious because the beams can only be taken out one at a time.
“That is why it will take quite a long time to finish the job,” Yahaya said.
Public Works Department (JKR) assistant senior director Zainal Abidin Bachok said it would take between four and six months to replace the termite-infested roof truss made of cengal wood.
“We will try our best to use the same type of wood. We are confident that we will be able to find a 40m long cengal wood in the market, although this type of wood is hard to find.”
Zainal said a contractor had been appointed to carry out the repair works, adding that he had started looking for the cengal wood.
The roofs were last repaired in December 1995 when the concrete tiles were replaced with clay tiles.