IPOH: The National Water Services Commission (SPAN) should allow the Ayer Ganda water treatment plant in Gerik to resume operations now that the deputy health minister has said its water is safe for non-consumptive use, Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu (pix) said today.
He said the plant’s shutdown has burdened some 1,500 residents, especially with Ramadan just around the corner.
On April 18, Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye said that water from the plant, closed since April 9 because of suspected arsenic poisoning, is safe for washing clothes and bathing but not for drinking or cooking.
Ahmad Faizal said he had written a letter to Land, Water and Natural Resources Minister Dr A. Xavier Jayakumar seeking his help to reopen the water treatment plant.
“I was told the ministry could not revoke the (plant shutdown) order except on the advice of the Health Ministry. To me it is clear advice has been given. Lee has made a media statement that water (from the Ganda plant) is safe for use other than drinking and cooking,” he said.
He was speaking to reporters after witnessing the signing of an agreement on water treatment system installation for Orang Asli villages between the Sultan Azlan Shah Foundation and the Islamic Medical Association of Malaysia Response & Relief Team) (IMARET) here.
Ahmad Faizal said the sending of treated water to the affected villagers daily was continuing but the water supply disruption is still a burden to them.
“It is hard to live on water from water tankers.
“I believe SPAN may have information I don’t, but still I believe Lee’s statement is good enough for the plant shutdown order to be revoked,” he said. — Bernama