There is a need for an effective flood mitigation system, in addition to an existing master plan, which would finally put flooding problems in the district to rest
KOTA MARUDU: A substantial allocation is needed for Kota Marudu, which is among the wettest districts in the state to overcome frequent floodings, says Minister of Energy, Water and Green Technology Maximus Ongkili.
He stressed on the need for an effective flood mitigation system, in addition to an existing master plan, which would finally put flooding problems in the district to rest.
“Plus, investment in capital expenditure to reduce the impact of floods will be much cheaper in the long run rather than ad-hoc remedial action to repair infrastructure and assist those affected by flood,” he said after visiting flood affected Kampung Kuranji and Kampung Popok Laut in Tandek here.
Also present were Kota Marudu District Officer Arnold Joibi, Kota Marudu Drainage and Irrigation Department engineer Frazer Duing, and representatives from government departments.
Ongkili, who is also Kota Marudu Member of Parliament said under the 11th Master Plan, RM96 million had been allocated to widen several main rivers in the district, as well as building wall retainers along riverbanks and straightening rivers, to mention some.
“At least RM1.6 billion had been spent over the last decade. Some of these action plans have been implemented, but the capital expenditure available has not been sufficient. These matters are being raised at both the federal and state government level,” he said.
He expressed confidence that the Barisan Nasional government would be able to find the best remedies to the problems.
“Kota Marudu always receive heavy rainfall. In major rivers like Sungai Bandau and Kanarom, during heavy downfall, flood from the mountain to the lowland has become a common occurrence.
“On the other hand, when there is two to three weeks of drought, there is insufficient river water at the district water treatment plants, thus clearly indicating the need to have water storage,” he said.
Hundreds were evacuated from their homes here due to flood following heavy rain the last few days, and rice and food packages were distributed by the Kota Marudu Member of Parliament office.
The affected residents have since returned home.