A Formal Letter Will Be Sent To Datuk Fadillah Yusof Next Week To Seek Federal Government Approval For The 3rd Bridge(e/c)

Press Statement By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng In Komtar, George Town On 22.5.2016.

A Formal Letter Will Be Sent To Datuk Fadillah Yusof Next Week To Seek Federal Government Approval For The 3rd Bridge From Gurney Drive On The Island To Bagan Ajam On The Mainland So That The State Government Can Consider Building A Toll-Free Bridge.

A formal letter will be sent to Datuk Fadillah Yusof next week to seek federal government approval for the 3rd bridge, from Gurney Drive on the island to Bagan Ajam on the mainland, so that the state government can consider building a toll-free bridge. During the Penang state Assembly meeting on Friday I had said that it would be difficult to get approval from the Federal government to allow the state government to build the 3rd bridge, when even the Prime Minister’s triple promises to build the LRT on Penang island remained unfulfilled.

Further the Federal government has also refused to even reply to numerous letters to the state government to permit the state government to build the LRT on our own at our own expense if the federal government refuses to do so. When there was no reply from the Federal government, the state government had no choice but to appoint a Project Delivery Partner(PDP) for the RM27 billion Public Transport Master Plan(PTMP) by open tender. The PDP is the facilitator not only to make the PTMP project technically and financially viable, but also to secure regulatory approvals for public transport licensing and Detailed Impact Environment Assessment(DEIA) studies.

From this painful experience, it would be difficult to secure a response to build a 3rd Bridge, much less obtain Federal government approval to build a 3rd bridge, even one that is self-financed by the state government at our own expense. The previous BN state government had surrendered the rights to the Federal government to build any bridges linking the island to the mainland. Whilst the state government had to seek approval to build such bridges, there is no mention of a need for such approvals for an underground sea-bed tunnel link.

For this reason, the state government was compelled to choose the more expensive tunnel link, which is more than twice the cost of the bridge. If the Works Minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof can give approval to build a bridge instead of the tunnel, this will save cost. The tunnel link costs RM3.7 billion(by open tender) and a bridge would cost RM1.8 billion, a savings of nearly RM2 billion. Such cost savings may allow the state government to waive the need to charge tolls for using the 3rd bridge.

The Penang state government has never imposed any toll charges on roads and bridges built, but had proposed a toll so as not to directly sabotage the business models for the other 2 existing bridges. Whilst the Penang state government wishes to thank Datuk Fadillah for his concern, we hope that he can approve the construction of a 3rdBridge at the state government’s own expense so that the Penang government can test whether a bridge can be built toll-free.

If the Penang state government fails to build the 3rd bridge toll free, then a toll champion like BN can then score huge political points against the Penang state government for our inability to realistically fulfil our promises. There is no reason for the Federal government not to give approval for the 3rd bridge when there is no cost to the Federal government as it will be fully financed by the state government. Further this will give the opportunity for BN to laugh at the expense of Pakatan for making empty promises no different from BN.

LIM GUAN ENG

槟州首席部长林冠英于2016年5月22日在乔治市光大发表文告:

州政府将在下星期正式去函拿督法迪拉尤索夫,寻求联邦政府批准兴建从新关仔角连接至峇眼亚占的第三大桥,若能成事,州政府将考虑不收过桥费。

州政府将在下星期正式去函拿督法迪拉尤索夫,寻求联邦政府批准兴建从槟岛新关仔角连接到威省峇眼亚占的第三大桥,若能成事,州政府将考虑不收过桥费。我在上星期五的州议会上曾说过,要联邦政府批准州政府兴建第三大桥不是一件易事,即便是首相曾三度答应在槟岛建设轻快铁,至今仍遥遥无期。

州政府过去亦曾多次去函联邦政府,要求让州政府自己建设轻快铁,但联邦政府拒绝予以回复。在联邦政府一直没有答复之下,州政府别无选择,只有透过公开招标委任项目交付伙伴,进行270亿令吉的交通大蓝图。有关项目交付伙伴不仅仅需在可行的技术及金钱上执行交通大蓝图,最重要的是还要通过环评及获取公交准证。

即便州政府将是自费兴建有关大桥,但从过去惨痛的经验中,我们得知要获得联邦政府回应兴建第三大桥一事并非容易,谈何批准?前朝国阵政府过去已把兴建连接两岸大桥的权力交给联邦政府,因此,州政府往后要建设任何大桥,就必须寻求批准,可是,海底隧道并不在此例。

有鉴于此,州政府被迫选择费用更高的海底隧道,建一条海底隧道,经费将是建一座新桥的一倍或以上。倘若工程部部长拿督法迪拉尤索夫能够批准兴建第三大桥的计划,那我们就不再需要海底隧道。海底隧道的成本为37亿令吉(公开招标),而一座新桥的成本约18亿令吉,若选择后者即可省下约20亿令吉。这省下来的费用,我们将可用来抵销过桥费。

槟州政府从未在现有的道路与桥上强加任何过路费,唯曾建议若要收费则不能直接影响现有两座大桥的生意。槟州政府感谢拿督法迪拉的关心,我们希望能够批准由州政府自费建造第三大桥,让我们实验看看这座新桥是否能够完全没有收费站。

要是槟州政府无法做到第三大桥免收费,那以擅长打造收费站闻名的国阵将得以赚到政治分数,他们可以用无能及空口承诺来打击槟州政府。联邦政府批准槟州政府兴建第三大桥并不需要负上任何成本,因为所有经费将由州政府自行承担,联邦政府没有理由不批准。而且,当我们无法履行承诺时,国阵也有机会嘲笑希望联盟,因为我们和国阵也没什么两样。

林冠英

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