RAUB: Datuk Chong Sin Woon has offered to fight for a spur line from the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) that will link Bentong with Raub.
Bentong and Raub towns are currently linked by a federal road that spans 33km, and Bentong already has an ECRL stop as the proposed line runs from Kota Baru all the way to Port Klang.
The MCA secretary-general, who is in a four-cornered fight with Pakatan Harapan, Pejuang, and Perikatan Nasional for the seat, said this was part of his aspiration to stimulate Raub's development.
"This is a rational pursuit to open an ECRL stop (via a spur line) in Raub. This is not just empty talk.
"I'm in talks with the relevant stakeholders and also the state government so that this can be reality," he said after engaging residents in Sempalit and Bukit Koman here yesterday.
The ECRL project is ongoing in Bentong, Mentakab, Maran, and Kuantan in Pahang.
Chong said that Bentong and Raub must be connected together to create more economic synergy.
"We need a sustainable development model in Raub.
"It is my mission for the long-term development of Raub after being elected," said Chong, adding that Raub has been “quiet” for 10 years, and it was time to revitalise the small town.
"The presence of an ECRL station will definitely drive the development of the surrounding area.
"We must pool our strength and work together to develop Raub to achieve greater things," said Chong as he appealed for support in Raub, especially from the Chinese community.
At a dinner with residents and farmers at Kampung Sungai Klau yesterday night, Chong said farmers have wanted him to open up more export markets for Raub's famous durians, including exporting to Indonesia.
"Pahang Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail has also spoken, and he realised that farmers only wanted to earn a living, and that the issue surrounding illegal farms can be resolved.
"So as long as we have a say through the peoples' mandate, we certainly can resolve the matter amicably," he said at the dinner that saw a crowd of 800 guests.