TUARAN: News about the replacement of the RM18 million crooked bridge, connecting the Tuaran township to Sungai Damit, is a serious matter that requires a thorough investigation, accountability for any wrongdoing, and a commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of the community.
Parti Kesejahteraan Demokratik Masyarakat (KDM) secretary general, Drr Gaim James Lunkapis, said transparency and a commitment to preventing similar incidents in the future are paramount in rebuilding trust with the government and ensuring public safety.
“An independent engineering firm or government agency should be tasked with this investigation to ensure impartiality. In-depth investigation into the construction of the original bridge should be conducted, not just by the JKR engineer.
“This may involve examining the blueprints, construction permits, materials used, and the actual construction process.
“If the investigation reveals that the crooked bridge was constructed with substandard materials, poor workmanship, or due to any form of corruption or negligence, those responsible must be held accountable,” he said in a statement here today.
Daim said this might involve legal action against the contractor, project managers, or government officials who oversaw the project.
He said a detailed analysis of the costs incurred in the original construction and the estimated cost of the replacement should be conducted.
“This will help in understanding whether any misappropriation or inefficiency led to the need for a costly replacement.
“The findings of the investigation should be made public and easily accessible. This will help rebuild trust with the community and ensure that everyone is aware of what went wrong and how it is being addressed,” he added.
Daim said If the contractor is found to be at fault, they should be held liable for the costs associated with the bridge’s demolition and reconstruction.
“This might involve legal action or negotiations. A review of government oversight and quality control mechanisms should be carried out to prevent such incidents in the future.
“If regulatory agencies fail in their oversight duties, there should be accountability measures in place for them as well,” he said.
On Tuesday, Deputy Economy Minister Dato Hanifah Hajar Taib was quoted as saying that the bridge connecting the Tuaran township to Sungai Damit would be demolished after studies found it to be unsafe.
She said, however, that a new bridge would be constructed at the same location.
Hanifah said this when answering a question by Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred Madius Tangau (PH-Tuaran) on the status of the bridge during the Dewan Rakyat sitting.