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RM15b Pan Borneo Highway delay: 'Contractors must explain'
Published on: Sunday, December 10, 2023
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RM15b Pan Borneo Highway delay: 'Contractors must explain'
The Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah President Tan Sri T.C. Goh. Right pic, our report on Friday.
Kota Kinabalu: The Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS) hopes both the federal and state governments will strive to assist Sabahans to better cope with the rising cost of living and expedite completion of the Sabah section of the Pan-Borneo Highway.

Its President Tan Sri T.C. Goh said the contractors responsible for delaying the RM15 billion highway project must be made answerable.

He supported the Prime Minister’s commitment to ensure transparency in the appointment of capable contractors, besides hoping that the Government would rigorously enforce this standard operating procedure (SOP), so as to avoid further delays in completion of the project.

He noted there are issues contributing to the delay which even caught the attention of the Agong during his tour of Sabah last September. 

Goh, who is also President of The Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia (Huazong), said this while welcoming the announcements and commitments by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim during his visit to Sabah and Labuan on Thursday. 

Goh, who is also President of The Federation of Sabah and Labuan Hokkien Associations (FSLHA), welcomed the Prime Minister’s acknowledgement that although the causes of spiralling prices in East Malaysia are complex, the issue of the high cost of living compared to Peninsular Malaysia must receive greater attention. 

He suggested that in addition to encouraging capable and technologically advanced manufacturers from West Malaysia to establish factories in East Malaysia, the Federal Government should also assist in attracting more foreign investors to set up manufacturing plants in East Malaysia. 

He believes such a move would help create more quality jobs, boosting the manufacturing sector, small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs) especially, and would be one of the most direct and effective measures to reduce the cost of living in East Malaysia.

He pointed out that the manufacturing sector in East Malaysia is still lagging behind West Malaysia and needs concerted efforts to better develop it.

“Many processing factories also rely on imports of raw materials from overseas or West Malaysia. Combined with the high transportation costs, this contributes significantly to the higher prices of goods compared to West Malaysia,” he pointed out.

On the Prime Minister’s statement that the Federal Government will study the need to build a new terminal at Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA), Goh, who is also a member of the 

Sabah Economic Advisory Council (SEAC), strongly opined that given the current and future needs of Sabah’s tourism and economic development, such a proactive plan is necessary and appropriate.

As for the Prime Minister’s statement that in its mere one year of administration, the Unity Government has addressed and resolved the issues related to Sabah’s rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), faster and more extensively than the previous government, Goh hopes the Federal Government will continue to ensure that all agreements, including the 40 per cent net tax revenue sought by the State Government are implemented in accordance with the spirit of the Federal Constitution.

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