KUCHING, May 15 — A total of 1,248 projects that require land acquisition have been approved from 2018 to April this year, Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan told the Sarawak Legislative Assembly today.

He said out of the total, 389 state-funded projects were allocated RM781.07 million and 130 federal-funded projects with RM227.67 million.

“The Sarawak Department of Land and Survey still needs funds amounting to RM1.535 billion to carry out land acquisition for the remaining 729 projects.

“The required funds are as much as RM448.67 million for 151 federal projects and RM1.086 billion for 578 Sarawak projects,” Awang Tengah, who is also the Minister of urban development and natural resources, said in his winding-up speech in the legislative assembly.

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He added the state government’s commitment to complete land repossession within six months is dependent on the channelling and availability of funds from the implementing agency.

He said the delay in channelling the allocation to the Land and Survey Department will affect the implementation of the project and will certainly affect the six month period as has been set.

“Therefore, I call on all state and federal implementing agencies in Sarawak to ensure that sufficient funds are prepared and channelled immediately to the Land and Survey Department for the purpose of finalising the land acquisition process,” he said.

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Awang Tengah said among the mega projects that have been and are being implemented that involved land acquisition are the Pan Borneo Highway, Second Trunk Road/Coastal Highway, Sarawak Sabah Link Road (SSLR), Trans Borneo and Northern Coastal Highway (NCH).

He said these projects are aimed at providing highway network infrastructure in a more planned, systematic and efficient manner in order to improve connectivity between urban and rural areas in Sarawak.

He said for the Pan Borneo Highway project, the availability of funds from the federal government to the Land and Survey Department has enabled the acquisition of land within the period of 2015 to 2017.

He said as of now the 826-kilometre highway from Teluk Melano, Sematan to Miri has been 99 percent completed.

He added the state government has channelled RM220 million funds to the Land and Survey Department to acquire land along the 215 stretch of the Second Trunk Road/Coastal Highway, adding that the acquisition of the remaining 40.6km of the road will be solved by the end of this year.

He said the Land and Survey Department requires allocation of RM194.45 million from the federal government for land acquisition for the Trans Borneo Highway project.

“The road construction involving a 73.8 kilometre stretch of road scheduled to start in November 2024 will be affected if the required amount of funds is not channelled to the Land and Survey Department,” he said.

“As for the Second Trunk Road/Coastal Highway, the availability of funds amounting to RM220 million channelled by the state government to the Land and Survey Department has solved the acquisition of land along the 215km stretch.

“The acquisition of the remaining land along the 40.6 km stretch will be completed by the end of this year,” he said.

“As for the Sarawak Sabah Link Road (SSLR) project, the availability of funds amounting to RM200 million for Phase 1 involving a 77-kilometre road alignment and part of Phase 2 involving a 45-kilometre road alignment, land acquisition will be solved on the end of this year,” he said.

He said the land acquisition for the remaining 275.5 kilometres of Phase 2 which requires a total of RM127 million will be completed in 2025, subject to the disbursement of the required funds.

Awang Tengah said his ministry will always improve communication and coordination with other agencies involved in channelling funds to ensure the successful implementation of more efficient projects.