NLA president says he does not know when the new parliament building will be completed

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The new parliament building at Kiakkai will not be completed within the extended deadline of December 15 this year and it is not known when exactly it will be completed, said National Legislative Assembly president Pornpetch Wichitvorachai on Wednesday.

The NLA president, accompanied by House of Representatives secretary-general Mrs Saithip Chavalitthawil and Mrs Wararat Atipaet, secretary-general of the Senate, led the media on an inspection trip to the construction site to follow up the progress of construction work.

Mr Pornpetch later told the media that construction was only 18 percent completed and there was no way that the parliament building would be completed this year although the deadline has been extended by 387 days.

Worse still, he admitted that it was unknown when the parliament building would be completed. The main problem, he said, is that four plots of land which include a health office of the city administration, a residential community of the Dyeing Organisation, a library of the city administration, a military housing village and the Yothin Burana school are yet to be handed over to the contractors.

He estimated that only 30 percent of construction work would be completed within the extended deadline at the end of this year.

He identified another stumbling block – bureaucratic redtape which has prevented the removal of earth from the construction site and dismantling of buildings at the site which must require a permission from the Treasury Department.

The NLA president admitted he didn’t understand why the contract was written in a way that the construction is to be completed in 900 days despite the fact that there are many buildings at the site which are yet to be dismantled.

He admitted that he didn’t know who would be held accountable if the parliament building is not completed within the deadline but he would not be held responsible.