Penang seeks RM10bil from Federal Govt

  • Nation
  • Friday, 02 Aug 2019

GEORGE TOWN: The Penang government is asking for RM10bil from the Federal Government to fund the Pan Island Link 1 (PIL 1) and Light Rail Transit (LRT) projects.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the state secretariat had drafted a letter to request for the sum.

“Hopefully, we can send the letter to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad by this evening (yesterday).

“The secretariat is putting in additional facts and making a final check before sending the letter, ” he said at a press conference in Komtar yesterday.

The RM9bil LRT line will begin from Komtar and pass through Jelutong, Gelugor, Bayan Lepas and the airport before ending at the Penang South Reclamation (PSR) near Teluk Kumbar.

The RM9.6bil PIL 1 is a highway project that connects Gurney Drive to the Penang International Airport.

At the same press conference, state agriculture and agro-based industries committee chairman Dr Afif Bahardin said a task force had been set up to come up with a mitigation plan for fishermen impacted by the PSR project.

“The task force has received a few feedback and proposals.

“For now, SRS Consortium, the project delivery partner, will review and come up with proper paperwork and a proposal.

“The task force has also decided to set up a sub-committee tasked to execute programmes and mitigation efforts.

“The task force has fulfilled Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s wish of setting up a mitigation body to mediate and discuss the PSR project.

“We want not only cash handouts for the fishermen, but more importantly, a sustainable fishing industry in the area to safeguard the livelihood of the fishermen when the project takes place.

“It is crucial for the state government to protect the interests of the fishermen and also to mitigate and replenish offsets caused by the project later on, ” he added.

The PSR project near Teluk Kumbar is a massive plan to reclaim three islands measuring 1, 800ha or the size of 3, 600 football fields.

On July 5, the state announced that the PSR had obtained the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) approval with 72 conditions to be fulfilled.

The PSR is expected to generate RM70bil, of which RM46bil will be used to fund the Penang Transport Masterplan.

Dr Afif said the task force had its first meeting last Monday to discuss the mitigation plan during the implementation of the PSR project.

He said among those present were Bayan Baru MP Sim Tze Tzin, Balik Pulau MP Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik, Bayan Lepas assemblyman Azrul Mahathir Aziz, Batu Maung assemblyman Datuk Abdul Halim Hussain and Teluk Bahang assemblyman Zolkifly Md Lazim.

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