Putrajaya: April 18, 2008 by Deborah Loh
The Perak government has requested that RM52 million in federal funds approved for the state before the elections be disbursed as promised.
Perak Menteri Besar Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said the allocation, from the Housing and Local Government Ministry, was for projects in the state’s 15 district councils.
He said he raised the matter with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi at a meeting yesterday, his first with the premier since becoming menteri besar.
“They are small infrastructure projects,” he said, adding that Abdullah had received the request well. Nizar was speaking to reporters waiting for him outside the Prime Minister’s Office where the hour-long meeting was held.
Nizar said the Pakatan Rakyat-led state government would cooperate with the federal government on major projects for the state’s benefit.
He informed the prime minister that the state was keen for the federal government to continue with projects such as the Northern Corridor Economic region (NCER), the double-tracking rail link, plans to expand the Ipoh airport, and improvement of port infrastructure in Lumut.
“With regards to the NCER, we want all that has been planned for the agriculture, tourism, human capital and manufacturing sectors to be continued. The prime minister is especially concerned about implementing the double-tracking rail link and he asked our state government for cooperation,” Nizar said, adding that he pledged to help get the project implemented quickly.
Nizar said he also raised the supply of natural gas through pipes to industrial areas in Manjong, Seri Iskandar, Jelapang and Ipoh.
The menteri besar added that Abdullah was keen on making an official visit to Perak and this would be arranged soon.
Nizar said he also put in a request to the premier to study how certain aspects of the Internal Security Act could be reviewed. He declined to give specifics but said it did not include repealing the Act.