Over RM1.2bil allocated for rural roads, says Mahdzir

KENINGAU: The Rural Development Ministry (KPLB) has allocated over RM1.2bil for the Rural Road Programme nationwide in efforts to provide a better rural-to-urban road network system, says its minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid (pic).

He said the programme was implemented in line with the Rural Development Policy to expand and improve the network of road systems in rural areas.

"The programme aims to extend 100% basic infrastructure coverage in villages in Peninsular Malaysia and 80% in villages in Sabah and Sarawak.

"For this purpose, this year alone more than RM306mil has been allocated for the development of rural roads for Sabah and more than RM221mil for Sarawak," he said.

He told reporters this after inspecting the Jalan Rancangan Belia Tiulon - Kampung Simbuan road upgrade project in Sook, near here on Saturday (Sept 24).

Also present were Deputy Works Minister Datuk Arthur Kurup and KPLB Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Mohamad.

Mahdzir said the road upgrade project had been approved under the Second Rolling Plan of the 12th Malaysia Plan this year at a cost of RM152mil.

"This project involves upgrading a 20-kilometre road with a paved width of 6.5m according to JKR R2 standards and the implementing agency is Sabah JKR.

"This stretch of road will also connect the villagers to Sook town and Keningau town as well as connect to 13 villages, three schools, clinics, houses of worship with an estimated total of 2,000 people to benefit from it," he said.

Mahdzir said the tender process for the upgrading project was expected to be carried out at the end of this month and construction work is expected to start in the first quarter of next year.

"This project will benefit people in the surrounding villages to transport crops and provide travel facilities for the villagers," he added. - Bernama

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