The Miri Port in Kuala Baram is not the only project which I had described as a "white elephant". Other projects which are "white elephants" include the new Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang, the KLCC, the Putrajaya but the Miri Port in Kuala Baram takes the cake at the biggest "white elephant" in the country in terms of capacity underutilisation, as it was virtually abandoned on its completion in July 1998.
It would appear that Sarawak not only has the biggest "white elephant" in the country, the state has "white elephant" lawyers which are yet to be found in the rest of Malaysia.
I await the "white elephant" suit by "white elephant" lawyers over the biggest "white elephant" in the country - Miri port in Kuala Baram - but the threat to initiate "white elephant" legal proceedings should not be excuse for the Miri Port Authority or Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister, Tan Sri Dr. George Chan to avoid accountability from giving full and satisfactory reasons for building a RM350 million port which was immediately abandoned on its completion.
Edwin said the total cost of the project was RM250 million and not RM350 million.
He should visit the website of the Miri Port Authority which said before November 1997 that the cost of the port was RM287 million.
Probably Edwin has never visited the MPA website. Let me give
him the MPA URL, which is:
The MPA website said:
"MIRI PORT - TODAY
"Miri's history as a commercial port can be traced back about 86 years when the first Malaysia oil strike was made on 22 December 1910. With the discovery of black gold came inevitable progress and a small fishing village awoke to the onrush of development. Today, Miri has its own port authority and is a leading oil and timber port of Malaysia.
"Currently, Miri port is accessible only to coastal trade vessel of about 1000 GRT, due to the notorious sand bar at the Miri river mouth.
"Services and facilities available at Miri location consists of 77 metre (or 254 ft) berth length and general cargo handling, including container service. Stevedoring services is provided by private sector and their productivity is rated as one of the highest amongst Malaysian ports i.e. 96 metric tonnes per gang hour. Container handling is also provided by private contractor using conventional cargo handling equipments and their productivity rate is about 15 boxes per hour. The authority owns 4 units of transit shed with floor area of 2,165 sq. metres and 1,133 sq. metres of open storage; and maintains 24 hours surveillance with its own security force.
"THE NEW PORT COMPLEX AT KUALA BARAM - GATE WAY OF THE FUTURE
"Miri Port Authority's (MPA) port of the future is taking shape in Kuala Baram, about 30 km from Miri. The RM 287.0 million development is a giant step forward by MPA to position the port for its role as the gateway to northern Sarawak. And with the innovative design and futuristic look, the new port complex will become a showcase of port development for the state.
"The new port which will be operational by 1st November 97, offers new facilities and opportunities for the shipping community."
May be Edwin would want to ask the MPA to take down its website!