Sarawak Government directed timber concessionaire to stop charging toll on all motorists using the Murum bridge (also known as Metalun bridge) with immediate effect.
Sarawak Assistant Minister of Culture and Heritage Liwan Lagang said the abolishment of the toll would be a great relief to those regularly using the bridge.
“I feel very touched and humbled by the goodness and concern shown by Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Adenan Satem because his office called me regarding the matter.
And later, he himself called me to inform that he had instructed the company concerned to waive the toll at Metalun Bridge with immediate effect,” Liwan told The Borneo Post at his office in Bangunan Baitulmakmur, Kuching yesterday.
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The concessionaire admitted charging motorist minimum RM150 per crossing saying it was done for security reasons – preventing sabotage and theft.
“The company has also clarified that the whole intent of the high charge is for security reasons.
“They elaborated that they had been facing issues like theft, sabotage and so on,” The Borneo Post reported.
However according to the local communities that was a ‘lame excuse’ after unfairly restrict their activities such hunting and fishing within the concession areas.
The highest tolls previously charge on motorist plying the bridge was over RM2500 for an empty lorry and could be as high as RM5,000 when fully loaded.