Bebel Without a Clause

Bebel Without a Clause

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Isu air dan derhaka tihta sultan: Khalid Ibrahim , once a traitor always a traitor?

A good write up on the water issus in Selangor by Datuk Seri Azman Ujang, ex- director .
in chef of bernama.

Ingat tak baginda Sultan ada menitahkan supaya isu air ini jangan dipolitikkan, dan isu ini telah lama diselesaikan semasa zaman BN dulu. Sudah jelas Khalid menderhaka lagi kepada Sultannya, adakah ini tabiat asli orang Melayu berbangsa JAWA ijok.

Langat 2 akan sentiasa memberi manfaat walaupun perlaksanaan nya mungkin akan mengambil keuntungan yang ada merasakan berat sebelah atau tidak adil.

Air adalah isu keselamatan,seperti diSingapura, lebih2 lagi pasir nak bertayammum pun dah kena jual. Tetapi Kalau berjunub , air lagi best beb.

Majlis keselamatan negara (MKN) telah mengenal pasti air sebagai sekuriti, lama dah dan selari dengan piawaian antarabangsa dan seharusnya ia dibawah jagaan Pusat. Ia sebagai tier ketiga sama dengan bekalan elektrik.

Kalau tak ada air Pulak, kilang beerpun mungkin kena tutup dan juga spa2 dan rumah urut Ronnie Liu. Cuba fikir mengapa mereka berdua ini senyap pasal isu Catuan air.

Ukuran untuk air mencukupi mestilah simpanan yang dihantar sebelum ke pengguna, iaitu empangan yang mengandungi air dirawat.

Kalau penduduk Selangor ini mengamalkan sikap sayangi sungai maka, sewaktu krisis bolehlah kita menggunakan air sungai tanpa rawat.

Holding water security to ransom

SELANGOR Mentri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim last week upped the ante in his game of brinkmanship with the federal government over water issues as the dreaded water crisis has begun in his state, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.

Reports say at least one million people in the three regions, which are the country's most densely populated, are affected by supply shortages.

It's not surprising that Khalid remains defiant. He thinks he holds the trump card against the federal government for the Pakatan Rakyat coalition which rules Selangor.

But what's unbecoming is that in doing so, he is also going against the "titah" or royal instruction of the Sultan of Selangor, Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah.

In May, the Selangor ruler told the Khalid administration not to politicise the water issue "in the interest of the people and development of the state". But it seems now that not only did he choose to ignore all warnings of the water crisis, but has even worsened the situation by issuing an ultimatum to the federal government last Friday.

He is demanding that the federal government put in writing the proposed "post-Langat 2" water tariff and declare water facilities worth RM10.5 billion as "state assets" before both parties can even discuss approval for the Langat 2 treatment plant, which the state government has withheld since it came to power four years ago.

Langat 2 can ensure adequate treated water supply in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya with some 7.3 million consumers until 2030.

Khalid's stand against granting the development order for work on the Langat 2 plant to begin is based on his fears of a tariff hike, among others.

"If they agree not to increase the water tariff, we also want to discuss the recognition of RM10.5 billion of Selangor's assets. Then I will tell the people of Selangor that this is a good deal for them.

"If I am satisfied, they can even proceed with Langat 3," he said in a display of ego as he knows that nobody has even talked about a Langat 3.

Selangor's water politics has not only thickened but Khalid has a knack of throwing more spanners in the works. These include transferring water from the Kenyir Lake in Terengganu rather than the Pahang river like the federal government has decided with plans well underway, as well as developing the state's underground water sources.

Even his insistence on reducing non-revenue water (NRW) by 10% as a better alternative to the Pahang-Selangor Water Transfer project, which includes the Langat 2 plant, has been dismissed as not viable by an Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry senior official.

Its water sector senior division secretary Sutekno Ahmadbelon said it would cost RM7.2 billion to reduce NRW from 32.3% to 20.8%, which would only provide an extra 500 million litres per day (MLD), compared with the total cost of the Pahang-Selangor water transfer and Langat 2 which would cost RM8.9 billion but would bring in 1,130 MLD in its first phase.

It is also not cheaper to transfer water from Kenyir instead of the Pahang river as the cost to just lay the 500km of pipes from Kenyir to Langat will come to RM11.3 billion.

One might understand Khalid turning a blind eye to dealing with the BN politicians but why is he shutting out Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas), the privatised legal entity tasked with supplying clean water to Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya?

Khalid and his officials keep telling the people that there's enough water. Media representatives were taken to the five dams in Selangor which showed a decent level of water but the critical issue is treated water not raw water. All the 34 treatment plants are operating without a break and should some of them break down, then we had it.

Syabas chief operating officer Datuk Lee Miang Koi said that the company has sent no less than 50 proposals and follow-up letters to the state government to avert the water crisis but to no avail.

It's obvious that Khalid is against water privatisation but I'm sure he knows that signed contracts must be honoured. Anyway what kind of message are we sending investors?

Also legal suits amounting to hundreds of million have been filed by Syabas against Selangor for alleged breaches of agreements.

The Selangor government wants to take over water resources worth at least RM10 billion from the concessionaires but even assuming that it has the financial means to do so, how is it going to recoup its investments when it insists on giving free water to the people? So far Khalid has avoided talking about this.
So its policy on the matter is not only conflicting but, pardon the pun, doesn't hold water.

The bigger question is, why is the mentri besar allowed to virtually hold the country to ransom over such a critical matter as our water security which has a grave impact on the people and economy?

The federal government needs to work overtime to see how to unwrangle the mess before more taps run dry.

A former top Malaysian diplomat had the harshest criticism for Khalid when I asked for his views. Citing Singapore as an example, he said in the island nation, water is a security matter and there's no compromise when it comes to ensuring enough water for the people, and they plan and execute water projects as a long-term strategy.

And there are no political squabbles when it comes to water.

"Unfortunately the mentri besar is a political naivete," he said. "This is an irresponsible act for the country and well-being of the people and the likes of him should be held accountable before it is too late."

If not, Malaysia would end up being the laughing stock of our neighbours as a country blessed with a lot of rain but unable to provide enough water to its people "on account of political stupidity", he said on condition of anonymity.

In Singapore, any act of endangering water security is tantamount to treason, he said.

So forget politics or we'll have a dry Hari Raya with other possible crippling consequences.

Azman Ujang is a former editor-in-chief of Bernama. Comments:

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