KANOWIT: Sarawak is targeting 100 per cent coverage of water and electricity supply throughout the state, including rural areas, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.
“For us to achieve it, we need leaders with a vision, leaders who are responsible, leaders who have a visionary for us to move forward economically,” he said at a utility project launch here yesterday.
He pointed out that in order to develop the state, it needed water and electricity supplies.
“So, I took a bold step and discussed with the Utilities Minister Datuk Seri Dr Stephen Rundi to proceed with the Sarawak Alternative Water Supply (Sawas) and Sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme (Sares) projects.
“Within two years, we (state government) have allocated more than RM5 billion for the implementation of Sawas and Sares projects,” he said.
Abang Johari also revealed that the state government was a futuristic one.
“We know our direction because we want to give the future to our young generation which accounts for about 60 per cent of the population here. And they must be given the right job and the right eco-system.
“This is why, we need to transform Sarawak into a beautiful place with our own technology. With all the new technology and ICT … we will have high income and good quality of life … so we will become a high quality state by 2030.
“That is why our politics must be right which leads to great development,” he stressed.
On electricity connections, Abang Johari said that the government would provide free electricity connections worth up to RM5,000 to lessen the people’s financial burden, especially in rural areas.
He added that the cost of connecting electricity from the main power line to a house cost anywhere from RM1,000 to RM5,000 or more.
“The GPS government will foot the cost of connecting a service line up to RM5,000,” he said.
If the cost was over RM5,000, he added, the government would subsidise 70 per cent of the remaining cost.
“In our effort to be prudent and exercise good governance, we are not forgetting the need for us to lessen the burden of our rakyat, especially the low-income group.
“It is also good governance to ensure that the people are given what they rightly deserve,” he said.