Dr Sim: Sarawak to use own funds first to build much-awaited cancer centre
Posted on : 05 Jan 2022  Source of News: The Borneo Post Online

Dr Sim (front third left) joins Abang Johari (front third right) and other ministers and assistant ministers for a group photo after the swearing in ceremony. – Penerangan photo

KUCHING (Jan 5): Sarawak will build its much-awaited cancer centre soon using the state’s own funds, said Deputy Chief Minister Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian.

“The cancer hospital should be funded by the Ministry of Health. But the Chief Minister (Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg) has said we will do it through our own funding first so that our people don’t suffer.

“And then KL (federal government) will pay us later,” he told reporters after the State Cabinet swearing in ceremony at Lepau, State Legislative Assembly building last night.

Dr Sim, who is also Public Health, Housing and Local Government Minister, was providing updates on the proposed Sarawak Cancer Centre.

Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin had told the Dewan Rakyat in November that the Ministry of Health (MoH) is studying a proposal to set up a cancer centre in Samarahan to expand cancer services in Sarawak.

Khairy also said the proposal to build the Sarawak Cancer Centre is with the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) under the Prime Minister’s Department for consideration.

The centre is estimated to cost between RM800 million and RM900 million.

Dr Sim was one of three deputy chief ministers who took their oath of office before Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud in a hybrid event using virtual and physical means.

On his appointment, Dr Sim said it showed Sarawak practices inclusivity as the three deputy chief ministers come from different ethnic groups.

Thanking Abang Johari for the cabinet appointment, he said everyone would now have to work together to realise the objectives of the Post-Covid-19 Development Strategy (PCDS) for Sarawak to achieve a high-income developed status by 2030, where household income would rise to RM15,000 per household.

“Not only will we develop long-standing infrastructure that we haven’t done but also venture into new areas such as digital economy and so on and the new talents that we need to carry.

“With the financial independence that Sarawak has, we will have our own money now,” he added.