(NST) - The Selangor government has been told to stop blaming Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) for the water crisis and to take measures to ensure the situation does not get worse.
Gerakan Prihatin Rakyat Selangor (GPRS) chairman Datuk Sohaimi Shahadan said the conflict between the Pakatan Rakyat-led state government and Syabas would only victimise the people.
"We want Menteri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim to cease his charade and stop politicising the water issue.
"From what we observed, the state's argument that Selangor is not facing a water shortage is nothing more than political rhetoric.
"They visited overflowing dams and pointed out that it has been raining lately and, therefore, there is no reason for a water shortage.
"This showed that they still do not understand how raw water is processed to obtain treated water and their actions have confused the people," he said here yesterday.
Sohaimi said the state should stop hiding the fact that water in dams was not for daily use, but was kept as reserves in times of drought.
"The people are confused as water is being rationed when there is no drought.
"They do not understand the water treatment process and the fact that water treatment plants are working at overloaded capacity.
"There is plenty of water in rivers and dams but the plant can only process water up to a certain capacity, even when it's working around-the-clock, and this maximum capacity is not enough due to the increased demand.
"That is why we need the Langat 2 treatment plant."
Sohaimi said GPRS was not defending Syabas but it was concerned about the people of Selangor.
He said GPRS and more than 20 Selangor non-governmental organisations would visit the Syabas headquarters in Jalan Pantai on Tuesday to obtain more information on the water issue.
"During the visit, we will also determine if Syabas has a hidden agenda or whether it is the state government that is trying to confuse the public.
"They must be professional and stop politicising this issue immediately," he said.
Yesterday, Khalid was reported as saying that he was considering recommending the sacking of Syabas executive chairman Tan Sri Rozali Ismail and chief executive officer Datuk Ruslan Hassan, citing their failure to brief the state's recently-formed monitoring committee.
He said the dismissal could save the firm about RM5.1 million annually from the executive chairman's salary alone.
The committee, headed by State Secretary Datuk Mohd Khusrin Munawi, was set up to monitor Syabas on a day-by-day basis after the water concessionaire announced its plan to ration water in the Klang Valley.