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Newly built Sabah bridge found collapsed

KOTA KINABALU: The underbelly of infrastructure and development work in Sabah has again been exposed as rotten by an opposition team monitoring such work in the state.

The latest instance of shoddy work is a recently constructed bridge that no longer serves its purpose a year after its completion, according to a Pakatan Rakyat team which visited the site.

The new bridge in Kg Bungan Kota Belud, constructed under the Rural Infrastructure Development project under the Prime Minister’s Department, collapsed shortly after its completion in April 2009, according to the team.

DAP Kota Kinabalu MP Hiew King Cheu, state DAP leaders Edward Ewol Mujie and John Lee Kim Seng, PAS Sabah deputy commissioner Mohd Aminudin B Aling and publicity chief Ag Laiman Tkin made the visit recently after being told of the incident.

Hiew said it was surprising to see that the completed bridge had fallen into the river and was no longer able to serve as a link to the nearby kampungs.

“This is a vital short cut from the main road to the kampungs and now the kampung folk had to travel on a long detour to reach home, especially on bad unsealed road,” he said.

A check by Hiew, an engineer by training, revealed that the foundation of the bridge abutment had failed and caused the collapse of the bridge by up to a meter.

“The concrete bridge is now beyond repair and needs to be rebuilt totally,”  he said.

“The inspection has shown that the piling to the abutment/bridge head was either not sufficient or not done at all to support the weight of the bridge.”

Bridge to nowhere

The team said this was another example of costly development projects that had ended in disaster with public money being wasted and no one taking responsibility or made answerable.
The Pakatan Rakyat team wants the government to answer what went wrong and what action they intend to take on the matter.

“We cannot have this type of development projects going on under cover as if nothing had happened. There are plenty more in the Kota Belud district,” said Hiew.

This is the second instance of a bridge that was constructed but could not be used.

Last month, Hiew revealed a ‘bridge to nowhere’ at Kg Brunei in Membakut that has become an embarrassment to both locals and visiting dignitaries

The bridge near Beaufort on the west coast of Sabah, over a tributary of the Kimanis river at Kg Brunei, was completed in 2008 and was meant to replace a timber-bridge which was frequently affected by floods in the area, but is not connected to any road and is ‘sitting like a sculpture’.

Hiew said there could be many more such ill-conceived projects in the rural areas and urged the public to contact the Pakatan representatives to inform them of any problem in their area to ensure that the government spent their money wisely.

1 comment:

  1. It is very noticeable that the abutment is composed of logs only. What a cheating job by the contractor. The relevant authorities should do two deterrant actions: (1) request the contractor to rebuild the bridge at his own cost and (2) blacklist the contractor to prevent it from participating in future tenders by the Government.


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