| Azlan Othman |
THE capital will soon have an alternative source of water supply, which will provide flexibility, as a project to lay pipes from Bukit Barun in Tutong to the Brunei-Muara District along the Tutong-Muara Highway is 87 per cent complete.
“It (the project) is also meant to supply adequate water for the present, new and future housing development along the Tutong-Muara Highway as well as enhance the water supply to the existing water tanks,” said Minister of Development, Pehin Orang Kaya Indera Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awg Haji Suyoi bin Haji Osman during his visit to check on the project and look at the pipe installation as steel trusses were installed across the Tutong bridge.
“It would also mean that our water supply will not be interrupted once it (the new project) is operational,” the minister said.
The $85.8 million project began on April 12, 2012 and is scheduled to be completed Oct 11, 2015.
The project is slightly lagging behind as according to the plan, 92 per cent of work should have been completed by now.
As for underground pipe installation work, 42.3km of pipeline has been laid out of 46km, while above ground, four kilometres of pipeline have been completed out of the total 12km.
Meanwhile, asked on the current wet weather condition, Pehin Dato Seri Setia Awg Haji Suyoi said although some areas are underwater, they are still accessible as roads are still passable using four wheel drive vehicles, especially in remote areas of the Tutong District like Benutan, Kuala Ungar, Kg Bukit and so on.
On the whole, no area has experienced heavy floods and the relevant agencies like the Public Works Department of the Ministry of Development, Fire and Rescue Department, National Disaster Management Centre (NDMC) and the District Office are ready to handle floods and provide assistance.
“Although we have received reports of rising water levels in the Brunei-Muara and Belait Districts, the condition is not as bad as last year.
“Insya Allah, the severity of floods which have occurred in the neighbouring countries would not happen here in the Sultanate,” said the minister.
Asked whether the current wet season has anything to do with the climate change, Pehin Dato Seri Setia Awg Haji Suyoi said scientists have admitted that deforestation and high carbon emission causing depletion of the ozone layer are causing global warming and rise in sea level.
“I attended the recent conference in Lima, Peru to find ways on how to reduce our activities and the effects of global warming.
“But gaps exist between the developed and developing countries, G77 groups and smaller nations.
“The developing countries and smaller nations are badly affected by the climate change. The conference also touched on a green planet fund to seek ways of financial mitigation and adaptation so that any effects of global warming could be tackled.
“Differences still exist as to who would shoulder the responsibility, like who should compensate for the losses due to floods and so on.
“Poor countries have said developed countries should absorb the losses. It is hoped that a resolution could be reached at the upcoming meeting in Paris, France,” the minister said.
Pehin Dato Seri Setia Awg Haji Suyoi also visited the new Berakas interchange project.