We call on the Government to
reconsider signing Supplemental Concession Agreement with PLUS
Expressway, until the Prime Minister can resolve theissue of toll hike
along the North Side Highway
by Dr Tan Seng Giaw
(Kuala Lumpur, Monday): Yesterday, the Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang, Opposition Parties and Non-Government Organizations formed the Calition in Parliament, requesting the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to defer the increase by 10% of the toll tariff along the North South Highway from 1 January, 2005 by two months. This is to enable the Government to study the effects of the hike on the people. It is a reasonable request.
Now, the Government is planning to sign a Supplemental Concession Agreement with PLUS. It allocates RM967.8 million for the additional works, that is, the construction of the third lane at the Seremban-Senawang, Senawang-Ayer Keroh and Rawang-Tanjung Malim stretches; the construction of a direct link between the Ipoh Selatan toll plaza and the Jelapang toll plaza and the take-over of the Seremban-Port Dickson Highway as compensation for the abolition of the Senai toll, Senai ĘCJohor Bahru Highway.
On 24 October, 2004, PLUS took over the Seremban-Port Dickson Highway. Meanwhile, the Government is working out the details of the Supplemental Concession Agreement.
We believe that the Government must not only defer the tariff increase along the North South Highway, it must also clarify the duration of the concession with PLUS. Does the concession end in 2030 or 2038? With the Supplemental Concession Agreement, will the duration be extended further?
* Dr Tan Seng Giaw, DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong