KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 5 ― Minister of Environment and Water Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man should resign if Putrajaya does not take legal action against the company allegedly responsible for the pollution that caused water disruption in Selangor, Klang MP Charles Santiago said.
Charles, who was formerly the chairman of National Water Service Commission (SPAN), said a mere RM60,000 fine will not suffice from stopping huge companies from pollution.
He added that there are Acts that allow the ministry to impose fines up to RM500,000, whipping or imprisonment, and such penalties are warranted in the case of the water contamination that has caused million of households to have no water supply for two days now.
“Imposing a fine of RM60,000 for example, doesn’t stop big companies from polluting waterways,” he said in a statement.
“As the Chemistry Department would take anywhere between two to three weeks to determine if waste is also radioactive, the government must bring charges against the company within the next one month to show it takes this matter seriously.
“Or Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, the Minister of Environment and Water, must resign,” he added.
A total of 1,292 areas in the Klang Valley, Petaling, Klang/Shah Alam, Kuala Selangor, Hulu Selangor, Gombak and Kuala Langat, involving nearly 1.2 million consumer accounts, were affected by the unscheduled water cut since Thursday, after the four treatment plants ceased operation.
The police said earlier today they have arrested four brothers in connection with the odour pollution incident in the Sungai Gong Industrial Area in Rawang, the source of the pollution. The four men are directors of the alleged culprit.
Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Amirudin Shari in a Twitter post yesterday said that one of the factories behind the cause of contamination in Sungai Selangor has been shut down by authorities.
Yesterday, state media channel TV Selangor reported Selangor State Environment, Green Technology, Science, Technology, Innovation and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman Hee Loy Sian saying the culprit is a factory that provides service and maintenance for heavy machinery and equipment.
As mentioned in the video, the factory responsible was identified as Yip Chee Seng & Sons Sdn Bhd located at Kampung Sungai Dua in Rawang. AAY Construction Sdn Bhd is also located in the same premise.
According to Hee, the factory was found to have neglected proper procedure when it comes to storing waste oil. He added traces of solvent odour was detected flowing into the river.
Malaysiakini reported that the company in question is a repeat offender and had been fined RM60,000 previously for a similar offence.
“According to the Water Services Industries Act 2006, the company is liable for an imprisonment up to ten years, a fine not exceeding RM500,000 or to whipping or to all three.
“On top of this the company’s operating license must be revoked and it shouldn’t be allowed to operate for the next five years,” Charles continued.
Air Selangor confirmed today that all four affected water treatment plants ― Sungai Selangor in Phases 1, 2 and 3, and Rantau Panjang ― have restarted their operations in stages since 10.30pm last night in stages.