Press Statement by Penang Chief Minister and Chairman of PBA Holdings Lim Guan Eng in Komgtar George Town on 27 February 2014.
Senior PBAPP officials will be sacked if false information is given about water stocks in Penang dams and water rationing imposed in March 2014. This shows how serious and committed the state government towards dealing with the severe drought season afflicting Peninsular Malaysia in ensuring that there is no disruption in water supply as well as in the daily lives of 1.6 million Penangites and investors.
From daily briefings given by PBAPP, senior officials have given assurances that there is adequate water with the Air Itam Dam at 70% capacity, Teluk Bahang Dam at 90% capacity and Mengkuang Dam at 50% capacity,brought down to 50% because of ongoing contruction works to more than double its capacity. PBAPP officials have assured me that there is no water shortage and no need for water rationing even if the rains do not fall in March.
This will be a test of the professionalism and effectiveness of PBAPP’s water demand management. As the top water supply operator in the country that is not only the most efficient and the lowest Non-Revenue Water at 17.6% compared to the national average of 34%, has allowed Penangites to enjoy the lowest water tariffs in Malaysia. Unfortunately PBAPP’s efficiency and lowest water tarriffs has also caused Penangites to waste water the most, with the highest consumption of 302 liters per person per day as compared to the national consumption average of 213.
I have warned PBAPP senior officials that should Penang have to undergo water rationing next month, then they have to face the ultimate price of being sacked. If the rains do not come by late March, an evaluation will be held on 1 April 2014 to determine whether there is any need for water rationing. In the meantime, Penangites and the important business and manufacturing community can go about their daily lives undisturbed with the repeated pleas from the state government to conserve water.
Lim Guan Eng