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Delay in Penang third bridge project: Don't blame us, says Works Minister

Delay in Penang third bridge project: Don't blame us, says Works Minister
Fadillah (pix) also expresses concerns that although the Penang government had defended the RM305 million cost of the studies to be reasonable, the ministry believes the cost is excessive. - Filepic
KUALA LUMPUR: The Works Ministry today stressed it has yet to receive any documents from the Penang state government on the third bridge project.

Thus, its minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof said in a statement today, it should not be blamed for the delay of the project which will link Penang island to the mainland.

He said the ministry is also willing to help the state government with the project although it has suspended discussions on the matter in July last year following its failure to submit the necessary documents.

"Today marks the end of the first quarter of 2017. Our ministry wishes to update the public that we have yet to receive the studies. Therefore, the fault for any delays do not lie with our ministry.
"Our ministry also wishes to express certain concerns about this project and offers our assistance to the Penang state government should they need it," he said.

Fadillah said the ministry is also concerned about the delay in the feasibility and detailed design studies which the ministry had asked for five times from May last year.
"It was reported that these studies were commenced in late 2013.

"The concession company awarded the RM6.34 billion Penang Tunnel and 3 linked roads had stated in January 2014 that the studies would be completed and revealed to the public by April 2014," he said.

He also expressed concerns that although the Penang government had defended the RM305 million cost of the studies to be reasonable, the ministry believes the cost is excessive.

It is beyond the usual cost guidelines for construction projects of that nature, Fadillah said.

"We have the expertise to complete the studies on-time and at lower cost. We again extend our willingness to explore with the Penang government should they require help," he added.