Why no Cabinet Committee on dirty water?

The consumers were not prepared for the smelly tap water when it prevailed for a couple of days in many parts of the Klang Valley three weeks ago. As a result there was great hue and cry by water consumers, NGOs and many other concerned parties over the issue.

Now that the uproar has abated, I am sure that the issue of smelly water will slip into oblivion as usual.

It must be noted that, for now, the smelly water is a rare occurrence in the Klang Valley. On the contrary, dirty tap water is a daily occurrence and it is sad to see that the consumers are still not only meekly accepting it but also willingly paying for the dirty water.

Consumers in the Klang Valley started to get dirty tap water over a decade ago. There was also hue and cry then by the affected consumers but it soon fizzled out. This was mainly because the consumers, after getting many false and empty promises from the water authorities, had to resort to the installation of expensive water filters in their premises to get over the problem. Or alternatively, they can purchase "purified" water from the water dispensers installed along five-foot ways everywhere.

And this practice persists till today!

Surely the perennial dirty tap water problem is more serious than that of the one-off occurrence of the smelly water. If smelly water justifies the setting up of a Cabinet Committee to address the issue, one on dirty tap water is indeed long overdue!

The above was published in The Star on 21/03/06.

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