Dr Sim: River channel project to eliminate Batu Kawa’s flash flood

Posted on 16 Feb 2024
Source of News: The Borneo Post Online

Dr Sim

Dr Sim said the river channel, which starts in the Batu Kawa area, is planned to by-pass the Sarawak River straight to the South China Sea. – Photo by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

KUCHING (Feb 16): The flash flood in Kuching, particularly Batu Kawa, is anticipated to be a thing of the past after the completion of a river channel as part of Sarawak’s flood mitigation project.

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Dr Sim Kui Hian said the river channel, which starts in the Batu Kawa area, is planned to by-pass the Sarawak River straight to the South China Sea.

“This is a very critical project which will involve more than RM1 billion,” said Dr Sim when met at Dewan R-Piang in Kampung Sinar Budi Baru here today.

He said so far, only 3km out of the total 11km channel has been completed during the time when the late Tan Sri Adenan Satem was the minister in charge of the Department of Irrigation and Drainage.

He also said the project, which is the list of concurrent projects, was approved by the previous government and had been reviewed and given another nod of approval by the current government.

“I am happy that the current government realised the urgent need of the project as it will not only benefit those in Batu Kawa but also the people who are living in the villages downstream,” he said.

Touching on the construction of a levee near MJC Batu Kawa, Dr Sim said Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg has initially allocated RM20 million for the project and had approved the remaining sum of RM44 million during the mid-term review of the 12th Malaysia Plan.

“We will proceed with the first phase of the project (with the RM20 million) and the tendering process is expected to start within this one or two months,” he said.

He further revealed that the top section of the levee, will be designed to include an area for exercise and recreational activities.

“Otherwise, it would be such a waste after spending about RM64 million, just for flood prevention. We want people to be able to jog or cycle on top of it,” he added.

“Once it is done, this area (Batu Kawa) will not flood again,” he added.

Touching on other issues, Dr Sim pointed out that several village homes are illegally built along the river reserves in Batu Kawa and Sungai Sarawak which are prone to be affected by the flash flood.

At the moment, the state government, he said, is trying to negotiate with the residents to move to an affordable housing project located near Kampung Segedup here.

The units of affordable homes for the project, he said, will be open to the public while priorities will be given to those under the N8 Satok and N14 Batu Kawa constituency.

“This housing project is aimed to enable the families in both constituencies to live together and not far apart from each other,” he added.

Copyright © Department Of Irrigation & Drainage Sarawak

Last Updated On 19 Jul 2024

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