KANOWIT – Sarawak needs an allocation of RM8 billion to to provide clean water and electricity supply to all its rural areas by 2025.
Public Utilities Minister Datuk Dr Stephen Rundi Utom said this was to ensure that rural areas could catch up with development in urban areas under the 11th Malaysian Plan.
“I hope the federal government can understand the aspiration of the rural people to enjoy the facilities on par with those in the urban areas.
“The people in rural areas have been strong supporters of Barisan Nasional and that support should be reciprocated with infrastructure development,” he told reporters at a casual meeting with the people at Rumah Juckine Saing in Nanga Jagoi, here, today.
The state had formed the Sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme (Sares) and the Sarawak Alternative Water Supply (Sawas) to supply electricity and water in remote areas that could not be reached by road.
“Instead of generator set, we will build mini hydro-electric and solar panel to supply electricity in remote areas. Once there is electricity, we can build water treatment plant for them under Sawas.”
Rundi, who is also Kemena state assemblyman, said the state government would implement Sares projects for the benefit 41,000 households in over 70 areas next year.
This year alone, Sares project had been implemented in 48 areas and all are expected to be ready by Christmas.
Some 67 areas have been identified for implementation of Sawas projects next year.