COMMENT | Our basic right to safe, clean and uninterrupted water supply is ignored

R Nadeswaran


COMMENT | More than 30 years ago, the news editor was startled when he saw a reporter’s raw copy, which was written along these lines: “We could have poisoned half of Kuala Lumpur yesterday. There is no security in most of the reservoirs in the city and in most cases, there are holes in the perimeter fencing allowing easy access.” This was a follow-up after the body of a schoolboy was found floating in a reservoir in Cheras.

The late MA Razman changed the intro, saying that “you should not be giving ideas to terrorists”. These days, no one needs to give such ideas. The government has demonstrated how vulnerable our water system is and to what extent. It is now suggesting “sabotage” as an excuse for the current water woes suffered by more than a million consumers.

When folks in Petaling Jaya and the surrounding areas endured a four-day water disruption last month, many residents had an option – to drive to friends’ houses in the Federal Territory where water was flowing through their taps.

The current inter-district travel restrictions no longer make such journeys possible. Telling the policemen manning the roadblock that “saya pergi cari air untuk mandi” (I am going to find water to have a bath) is not likely to hold water (pun intended).

While we have already endured another round of dry taps for three days and still counting, the powers-that-be, the water company and other self-appointed guardians of our waterways are still continuing with the same old tales...

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