The second Pyithu Hluttaw’s ninth regular session held its third-day meeting at the Pyithu Hluttaw meeting hall yesterday, where asterisk-marked questions were asked and answered, a motion tabled, a bill tabled and a report read.
U Oo Tun Win of Kyauktaw constituency posed the first asterisk-marked question on plans to construct community halls in major village tracts in the townships of Rakhine State. Deputy Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement U Soe Aung replied that geographically, Rakhine State is located in a coastal area and is affected by storms every year. As per the instructions of the National Disaster Management Committee, the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement is cooperating with the Rakhine State government to construct multi-purpose buildings that can be used as safe havens for people, a school, a place for social activities, a health care centre, information centre, youth centre, etc. Such buildings are required in the major village tracts in the townships of Rakhine State.
Till date, 24 such buildings were constructed and 30 remain to be constructed.
Four are under construction by the Rakhine State government with funding from Bangladesh. From the national disaster management fund, 26 more will be constructed under a tender system this year. Works were being conducted according to procedures to construct a total of 87 shelters under a tender system in four natural disaster-prone states and region, 57 in Ayeyawady Region, 26 in Rakhine State, one in Shan State and three in Chin State. At the moment, preparations are being made to sign a contract with tender winning companies.
Once these 26 shelters are constructed in Rakhine State, there will be a total of 54 shelters in Rakhine State. These shelters were constructed in 54 disaster-prone villages in 11 townships and these cyclone shelters can be used as community halls, said the deputy minister.
Yangon Inner Ring Road
Replying to a question posed by U Nay Myo Htet of Kyauktada constituency on the status of the Yangon Inner Ring Road programme that would ease traffic congestion and be convenient for people in Yangon Region, Deputy Minister for Construction U Kyaw Lin replied that an announcement was made in the state-owned newspapers to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) by 29 June 2018. A total of 53 foreign and local companies and groups had submitted EOIs.
Request for Quotation (RFQ) will be made in August 2018, Request for Proposal (RFP) in November and December 2018 and Bidder Winning Award and Contracting in January and February 2019.
Assessments will be made in stages as mentioned and a minimum of one to a maximum of four companies and groups will be selected and work on the Inner Ring Road will be implemented in early 2019. Construction will be completed within three years and government funds will not be used. The companies are to invest with their own arrangements. Return on investments will be from tolls for road usage. Announcements will be made in detail at each stage, said the deputy minister.
International standards for road construction, maintenance and repair
U Zarni Min of Shwegu constituency then asked if there are plans to construct, maintain and repair roads to match international standards and quality. Deputy Minister for Construction U Kyaw Lin replied that the Ministry of Construction understands and knows the international technique, standard and quality for road construction, maintenance and repair, but due to the funding situation of the country, it is using the old method of construction till date.
The cost of laying a mile of road in the country is one seventh of the neighbouring countries. Even though roads were not being constructed up to international standards and quality, the ministry is conducting a soil test of the land on which the road is to be laid and designing appropriate Penetration Macadam, DBST (Double Bituminous Surface Treatment) or concrete road work. Quality Control (QC) inspections were conducted systematically to ensure that roads are constructed according to the design. The department is taking strong action against the site (construction) engineers if the construction does not follow the design.
The Ministry of Construction will strive towards the development of the road and bridge sector in all states and regions. It will coordinate with Hluttaw representatives to control and manage the works and will accept the guidance of Hluttaw representatives to provide the best work and upgradation, said the deputy minister.
Deputy Minister for Construction U Kyaw Lin then continued and replied to questions posed by U Pe Than of Myebon constituency, U Khin Maung Myint of Yaksawk constituency and U Win Min of Hlinethaya constituency.
Motion to control and manage BOT contracts under Private-Public Partnership
Next, U Kyaw Swe Win of Kawhmu constituency tabled a motion urging the government to control and manage BOT (Build, Operate, Transfer) agreements conducted all over the country for constructing roads under a PPP (Private-Public Partnership) system.
The Hluttaw Speaker announced the acceptance of the Hluttaw to discuss the motion after the Hluttaw’s decision was obtained.
Later, Pyithu Hluttaw Speaker U T Khun Myat announced that Hluttaw representatives who want to discuss the motion should enroll their names.
Report on Consumer Protection Bill read
The Ministry of Commerce then tabled the Consumer Protection Bill and bill committee member U Zaw Win read and explained a report on the bill.
Later, Pyithu Hluttaw Speaker U T Khun Myat announced that Hluttaw representatives who want to discuss the report should enroll their names.
The fourth-day meeting of the second Pyithu Hluttaw’s ninth regular session will be held on 2 August, it is learnt.—Aye Aye Thant (MNA)