ONE can fully understand the difficult task ahead for Energy, Water and Communications Minister Datuk Seri Dr Lim Keng Yaik to resolve the water woes, especially in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.
He has asked for more time to look into the Federal Government’s takeover of water supply from the state governments and the establishment of the new National Water Commission, “More time needed for water takeover plan”, (The Star, May 21).
Dr Lim has also acknowledged “the water problem is a very serious problem”. It is hoped the he would find appropriate solutions.
As far as the water supply in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya is concerned, besides the perennial dirty tap water, sufficiency of supply of potable water after the year 2006 is a major concern.
This is the right time to carry out the Pahang/Selangor raw water transfer scheme.
This scheme was identified in the early 90s and the design works were to have started in 1999 with construction scheduled to commence in 2001 for completion in 2006.
It is now 2004 and still no one has any inkling when the scheme is going to kick off. Even if the project starts now, it will take five years to complete and Klang Valley will be in dire straits from 2007 when the demand for water in Selangor would exceed supply, as has often been announced by both the state and Federal governments.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had said this interstate water transfer project would be implemented but would only be completed in 2009 - missing the target by at least two years!
Therefore water shortages in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya after year 2006 is now a foregone conclusion and it is hoped Dr Lim would focus his attention now to alleviate this problem before it is too late.
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