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Kuching stage bus service to be operational within a year — Minister
Posted on : 22 Nov 2017  Source of News: The Borneo Post
 

Kuching stage bus service to be operational within a year — Minister

November 22, 2017, Wednesday Jacob Achoi, reporters@theborneopost.com

 

Ali Hamsa (third left) exchanging the documents with Chan, witnessed by Nancy (fourth left).

KUCHING: A stage bus service here is expected to be operational within a year will initially plying 27 routes (15 trunk routes and 12 feeder routes) in areas under the jurisdiction of Kuching City South Council (MBKS), Kuching City North Hall (DBKU), Padawan Municipal Council (MPP) and Kota Samarahan Municipal Council.

Yesterday, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the federal government which was represented by Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sr Dr Ali Hamsa and Konsortium BBK Sdn Bhd (KBBK) the network operator, represented by its chairman William Chan.

The MoU, signed at Waterfront Hotel here, also involved the federal and state governments represented by State Secretary Tan Sri Datuk Amar Mohamad Morshidi Abdul Ghani, and witnessed by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri.

The state government will co-ordinate and monitor the programme, called Stage Bus Scheme Transformation (SBST).

Nancy told a press conference later that 130 new buses from five companies would be available under the SBST project.

She said the bus operators participating in the SBST are City Public Link Bus Services Sdn Bhd, Sarawak Transport Company Berhad, Bau Transport Company Sdn Bhd, Petra Jaya Transport (Sarawak) and Biaramas Express Sdn Bhd.

“Kuching is among five cities in the country being selected to have this SBST, and we expect it to be fully operational within a year.”

She said the routes would be gradually increased in the future, adding that the 27 routes would cost about RM241 million for five years.

“For the pilot project, it will start with 27 routes and I don’t see any problem with the routes to be increased (in the future),” she said, adding the buses  would be OKU- friendly and equipped with electronic ticketing system (ETM), geographical positioning system (GPS) and closed-circuit television (CCTV).

Nancy also hoped that Tabung Ekonomi Gagasan Anak Bumiputera Sarawak (Tegas) could provide training for young drivers to fill the vacancy as bus drivers under SBST, adding that she had talked to Assistant Minister of Urban Planning, Land Administration and Environment Datu Len Talif Salleh about the matter.

“It will be very costly for our young people to obtain bus driving licence and I hope Tegas can assist,” she said.

The SBST project was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak under the federal government ‘Aku  Janji’ to cover five cities. Besides Kuching, the other cities to have SBST are Kangar, Seremban, Ipoh and Kuala Terengganu.

Its implementation in Kuching is spearheaded by the Prime Minister’s Department, and implemented by Ministry of Infrastructure Development and Transportation (MIDT), while in Peninsular Malaysia it is implemented by Public Land Transportation Commission (SPAD).

Assistant Minister of Transport Datuk Dr Jerip Susil, MIDT permanent secretary Datu Safri Zainuddin, and chairman of Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board (CVLB) Hasbi Habibollah were also present at the MoU signing.