Fire site must be redeveloped

Chieng (centre) and SUPP leaders from his branch in Sibu together handing over the donation.

SIBU: The old wooden houses which were destroyed by a fire at Jalan Tiong Hua on March 29 have to be demolished to make way for redevelopment.

Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) Deputy President II and SUPP Bukit Assek Branch Chairman Datuk Chieng Buong Toon on Monday (Apr 12) told reporters this after presenting donations to the fire victims here.

He said there was no other way to redevelop the fire site.

“After this fire, we received a lot of comments from the public who wanted an update on the Bukit Assek Redevelopment Plan.

“The houses here are old because they were built in the 1960s,” he said.

According to Chieng, the houses there are separated by a small road and when a fire breaks out, it can easily spread to other houses.

To make matters worse, he said, most of the tenants did not have fire extinguishers.

The fire on March 29, he said, as well as the fire that happened two years ago were strong reasons why the area needed to be redeveloped. 

“The Bukit Assek Redevelopment Plan is a mega project. It is not easy to implement it because it requires additional time and we do not have elected representatives from the government in Bukit Assek constituency,” he said.

However, Chieng hoped the state government would consider the plan mooted by SUPP Bukit Assek Branch.

He also revealed that the Land Custody and Development Authority (LCDA) recently conducted a survey in the area.

At the presentation of the monetary donations to the fire victims today, Chieng led SUPP Sibu which comprised SUPP Bukit Assek, Dudong, Pelawan, Nangka and Bawang Assan.

Also present were SUPP Pelawan Branch Chairman Councillor Clarence Ting Ing Horh, SUPP Youth Chief and Chief Minister’s Political Secretary Michael Tiang, SUPP Dudong Branch Chairman Councillor Wong Ching Yong and other party branch members.

Eleven families lost their homes while a man in his 40s lost his life in the fire which broke out on March 29 at around 1.30am.