WE residents of Petaling Jaya, Taman Medan and Kinrara affected by the PJDLink highway would like to inform you of our concerns about public infrastructure maintenance.
According to Peter F. Drucker, the famous management consultant: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” where an over-empowering work culture can demolish even the best of strategic ideas.
If only we can improve our “maintenance culture”, the infrastructure strategies would probably work.
Poor maintenance issues and disasters can be seen in repeated problems, continuously plaguing our country. Why do these issues happen?
We hope to dissect and solve some.
As a consultant and project manager for more than 22 years in the private sector, I guide clients via transformation changes, or apply such best practices, by breaking down the issues, eg, some public sector issues are common, such as:
1. Wrong priorities, due to ‘silo-based management’
Based on this report, an independent transport consultant has given poor marks to the current Transport Ministry, due to the lack of management skills.
In the private sector, we have something called ‘service management’ where we apply a matrix to measure incidents v problems, hence coming up with impact-to-business v priority modelling.,
This clearly shows the value-engineering perspective, and hence business decisions will not go wrong. Or at least substantiate it for our stakeholders. Why is this the case?
2. Lack of governance
Based on this report, as per the independent studies, it seems the leadership in various ministries and departments – eg, the Malaysian Highway Authority, the Ministry of Transport, the Land Public Transport Agency, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Housing and Local Government – are all working independently with no proper project governance, conflicting roles, and “re-inventing the wheel kind of projects”, particularly in domain-sharing areas such as infrastructure plans and designs.
Can we form a project management office centralising these departments after the next election?
3. No blueprint for physical infrastructure
This country has the Town and Country Planning Act 1976. It drafts out the requirements for town planning across the nation.
It was mentioned during the state assembly that Selangor does not have a physical infrastructure roadmap. Therefore, the State Structure Plan 2035 can be tampered with.
To start, why are these “long-term design plans” not complied with? Successful nations plant trees, not uproot them. Will we be able to pass this legacy to the next generation?
4. Even before public transport, walking woes
Now, many people claim that people like to drive due to the lack of public transport services. Let’s go back to the root cause, first and last mile transit issues.
Soya Cincau group made a clever video depicting the general public transport user’s daily woes: