State PKR chairman Baru Bian believes that it is still not too late for the government to do something to ensure regular and clean water supply for the people of Sg Asap resettlement scheme.
In fact, said the Ba Kelalan assemblyman, the issue had been raised by him before the state election in 2011 when he visited Sungai Asap.
“Only now the BN leaders dare to publicly acknowledge it. If opposition raise it up, they say ‘we politicise it’.
“Good that the BN elected representatives raise it up. It’s not too late to do something. The (Sg) Asap people had suffered enough, notwithstanding their great national sacrifice to allow Bakun Dam to be built,” he told The Borneo Post yesterday.
Baru was commenting on thesundaypost’s front page story on Sunday that highlighted the people of Sg Asap resettlement scheme had lost their patience after waiting for regular and clean supply of water since moving there 19 years ago.
The more than 10,000 people who had given way for the government to develop the Bakun HEP dam in the 1990s and resettled at Sg Asap, feel they have been betrayed by the government which has not solved their water woes until now.
“I just can’t understand why clean water is still a major issue to the people there despite plenty of fresh water supply from both Bakun and Murum HEP,” Belaga assemblyman Liwan Lagang was quoted as saying.
Liwan, who is Assistant Minister of River Transportation and Safety, pointed out that despite the construction of a new water treatment plant which cost RM87 million in the area, the people still have to live with murky water and frequent interruption of supply, especially during festive occasions such as Christmas, Easter and Gawai Dayak.
He called on the relevant authorities, especially the Ministry of Public Utilities, to address the situation, adding that if it is the fault of the consultants, then change them for others who could do it.
“After all, the RM87 million allocated for the new water treatment project is not a small amount of money but we are still suffering from this water woes,” Liwan said.
He suggested if the present source of water from Sg Koyan is not suitable then the source should be moved to the HEP reservoir of Bakun and Murum.
Hulu Rajang MP Datuk Wilson Ugak Kumbong urged the staff of the Ministry of Public Utilities to go to Sg Asap and access the needs of the people there.
“You just can’t sit in your office and continue to let things happen on the ground. You need to be proactive to assist the people.”
Source : @ Borneo Post Online