The expanded Mengkuang Dam is expected to operate at full capacity by 2020 after all works to ensure the safety and functionality of the dam are completed.
Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the Mengkuang Dam has been expanded to store up to 73.5 billion litres of water, from 22 billion litres previously.
However, Chow said the structural integrity of the dam cannot be ascertained until it is filled up to its maximum level of 55 metres and all repair works are completed.
"All the works including slope cleaning, maintenance work and other repairs are currently under the Ministry of Water, Land and Natural Resource, which are expected to be completed in two years," he told reporters during his official working visit the site accompanied by Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) chief executive officer Jaseni Maidinsa here today.
He said the Ministry is currently working on upgrading the Mak Sulong Pumping station, laying of 6.85 kilometres of 1.6 metre diametre mild steel pipelines from the Mak Sulong station to the Sungai Dua canal and doing repairing work on 23 slopes at risk of landslides along the dam.
Chow explained that the upgrading of the Mak Sulong pumping station is to increase raw water pumping capacity from Sungai Kulim to help fill the Mengkuang dam while the ministry is currently calling for a tender to appoint a contractor to carry out slope cleaning works along the dam.
He said Penang needs a fully functional and safe Mengkuang Dam to meet all the water supply needs of its people beyond 2020.
Meanwhile, Jaseni also announced that PBAPP has received two national-level awards from the Malaysian Water Association (MWA) which was presented by Minister of Water, Land and Natural Resources Dr Xavier Jayakumar in Putrajaya yesterday.
He said the first award was MWA Water Industry Achievement Award 2018 "Best Water Treatment Plant" for the Sungai Dua water treatment plant and the second award the Malaysia Water Award for Management 2018.
"As the individual recipient for the Malaysia Water Award for Management 2018, I would like to dedicate the award to the entire PBAPP team who have worked hard and smart to make PBAPP a leading organisation in water supply," he said.