Panel to study looming water crisis


  • Nation
  • Friday, 20 Jul 2012

KUALA LUMPUR: The Cabinet has set up a committee to discuss the looming water crisis in Selangor, said Green Technology, Energy and Water Minister Datuk Seri Peter Chin.

Referring to Syabas' proposal to ration water and the Selangor Government's request to take over Syabas operations, Chin said: “We are studying these two matters and all issues regarding water supply in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.”

Chin will be in the committee that will be headed by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

The others in the committee include Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Noh Omar, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department and Pemandu CEO Datuk Seri Idris Jala and Federal Territories Minister Datuk Raja Nong Chik.

Datuk Seri Jamaluddin Jarjis will represent the Prime Minister's Office.

Chin said representatives from the Selangor Government were not invited to join the Cabinet committee, which will hold its first meeting on July 23.

“If we need to hear their views, we will call them.

“The Cabinet decided on the committee at its meeting on Wednesday,” Chin said on the sidelines of the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers Conference 2012 here yesterday.

He added that the committee would tackle the issues in a “holistic manner”.

In response, state executive councillor Elizabeth Wong said that without engaging the state government, any discussion by the committee would not have a meaningful outcome.

She said the state government would continue pursuing its takeover of Syabas' operations “with full speed” and that Syabas' water rationing exercise was unjustified.

Meanwhile, Selangor Barisan Nasional publicity chairman Datuk Yap Pian Hon accused the Pakatan Rakyat-led state government of resorting to propaganda by saying it wants to take over Syabas' operations.

“This move does not completely solve the water problem,” he said in a statement here.

Yap said state executive councillor Teresa Kok had “ridiculously claimed” that the Federal Government and Syabas were colluding to take advantage of the coming general election by creating water problems to cause panic among the public.

He added that another state exco member, Ronnie Liu, had visited the dams and had the audacity to say Selangor was not facing any water shortage.

“These irresponsible propaganda and political statements only prove that they are unwilling to take the blame,” Yap said.

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