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Charles Santiago sacked as SPAN chairman

17 Apr 2020 / 17:41 H.

PETALING JAYA: Klang MP Charles Santiago (pix) has been sacked from his position as chairman of the National Water Services Commission (SPAN).

The DAP man claimed that he was terminated by the Environment and Water Minister (Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man), which took effect on April 10, but that he had only received his letter today.

He noted that all other commissioners have also been dismissed from their respective positions.

According to Santiago, PAS’ Dungun MP Wan Hassan Mohd Ramli has been appointed as the new chairman.

“Anyone who knows me will understand this is not about losing a fancy designation but rather the deep concern that all the hard work done over the last 18 months may possibly go to waste,” he said in a statement today.

He pointed out that, among other things, he had launched the Integrity and Anti-Corruption Framework for Licence Holders and Certified Agencies in September last year.

“I have also pushed for SPAN to conduct special performance audits on water utilities, on top of its usual audit activities,” he said, adding that he had taken proactive measures to create awareness about pollution of water sources.

He said following his termination, it was important that Malaysians take ownership of all these issues concerning water and act as a watchdog to ensure the country’s rivers were protected.

“It’s important that together, we lobby the federal and state governments to channel more resources — funds and personnel — into monitoring and protecting our rivers and all other precious freshwater sources effectively.

“I hope the new chairman and commissioners will continue SPAN’s ongoing transformation process and the urgent work, to safeguard the sustainability and security of our water supply in the long term,” he said.

Santiago was previously appointed as SPAN chairman in November 2018.

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