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Sakmongkol ak 47

Monday, 21 September 2020

ECRL: Wee's Voodo Solution.

1. I am shaking in my boots. The great Wee Kah Siong has done a qualification dropping. He has a doctorate in transportation. So what he says is sage like. They must be absolutely true.

2. My response to that is to say: up yours! His reasoning and rationale for the construction of the Serendah Bypass are accepted unquestioningly only by the MCA minions, donee contractors and land buyers.

3. Opportunistic land buying in Bentong, Mentakab and Serendah can only be the consequence of WKS not being able to close his mouth.

4. In that respect, WKS is like Monica Lewinsky. She has a history of not being able to close her mouth. Ask Bill Clinton about that.

5. Forgive the diversion. Let's get back to see what is the rationale of WKS.

6. Chairman Wee says the construction of the Serendah Bypass will:-
(a) Will prevent congestion in KL and Port Klang.
(b) Prevent dangerous goods passing through densely populated areas.

7. The Bypass will cost RM5 billion only and will increase the overall cost of the PN ECRL to only RM49.5 billion.

8. Seems to me like financial 'padding'. Spend more as long its less than RM65. 5billion.

9. Work expands so as to fill the time available translates into spending increases so as to fill the opportunity available.

10. So spending an extra RM5 billion NOW is not prudent. The timing is not right.

11. Congestion at the KL-Klang is caused by cargo from both the North and South. Thus building the Serendah bypass only solve half the problem and not FULL.

12. Wee does not say which areas will benefit from the Serendah facility. Presumably only areas in Souh Perak and Ipoh. Areas in North Perak like Taiping and Seberang Prai further north will find it more economical to use Penang Port as it reduces transport cost and avoid double handling.

13. Is the original alignment economic then? It's a case of too few areas benefiting from a lot of money.

14. The Serendah facility will be Wee's White Elephant. Its a senseless spending.

15. Wee also does not provide us the volume of tonnage benefiting from the Serendah facility. What is the number of TEUs or FEUs sir?

16. And from which area? From the south of Perak only? Otherwise, its just voodo planning from Wee. A half baked solution to a fully baked problem.

17. The PH Alignment is demonstrably far more superior. It solves the congestion at Klang as it absorbs containers from the Nilai and Segamat inland ports. At the same time surrounding areas like Senawang, Seremban and Melaka benefit too. Has Wee compared the container volume of that coming from the North against that coming from the South?

18. I wouldn't even want to argue for any extra spending. RM44 billion is enough. The RM5 billion can be for later. Perhaps.

19. If we are really concerned over safety issues, then institute more stringent safety regulations. Perhaps that's a cheaper alternative. The containers don't become dangerous only when they reach KL but all along the track. So the containers must be fitted with more safety features.

20. That's more economically desirable than building a costly facility at Serendah which is an overkill. Let's not use a cannon to kill a mosquito.

21. It is also costly for the government to acquire lands in the North port West and South ports areas.

22. Wee has not told the government about these. So what is the eventual cost of his ECRL?

23. Why is it that Wee is so insistent on the original alignment? To the extent of saying the original alignment gives better economic possibilities, better connectivity and better safety regime?

24. Is it because certain parties have invested a lot in the original alignment and stand to lose millions if the PN government adopts the PH alignment?

25. It will be unconscionable for the government to capitulate to these greedy profiteers.

26. What to do? An incorrigible economist has given his unsolicited views. What do you get when you have 10 economists in a room? You get 11 opinions.

27. As an economist I assume wrongly, too much. I have assumed that Wee is out there to save money for the government. Obviously he's doing nothing of that sort. He's laying a fishtrap in a narrow passage.


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