Monday, February 17

Steps to fix Kota Belud water woes


KOTA KINABALU: Steps are being taken to help resolve the water supply problem in Kota Belud and this includes the construction of a new water treatment plant, distribution of water as well as water tanks to villagers in the district.

Kota Belud member of parliament Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said while the water supply shortage in the district was not new, it worsened after the June 5 earthquake in Kundasang and Mount Kinabalu.

The problem is further aggravated by the mud floods that contaminated Kadamaian river which is one of the water sources for Kota Belud, the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government minister said.

The district is now solely relying on Wariu River as its water source, he added.

“I am aware of the water supply problem in Kota Belud and I understand the pain felt by the people in the district as a result of this issue. I am in constant communication with the District Officer and Natural Disaster Committee to closely monitor the situation on the ground,” he said.

Abdul Rahman added that so far the rural water supply project involved the installation of distribution pipes which had been completed and the installation of pipes to villages in Kota Belud had also been completed on schedule.

Water supply, he disclosed, is now obtained through a borehole and the Pandasan Treatment Plant.

Currently there are only 12 boreholes in Kota Belud which are capable of producing 12 million litres of water daily but this cannot meet the 36 million litres required by consumers in the district, he pointed out.

According to Abdul Rahman, in the District Action Committee meeting two days ago, an action plan of immediate and long term measures in overcoming the water supply shortage problem in Kota Belud was drawn up.

The action plan calls for the use of a helicopter by the Water Department’s engineer, the Irrigation engineer, Fire and Rescue Services Department and police to do an aerial survey and gather accurate information on the situation of the rivers and water flow in the district.

“For the long term, we will build a new water treatment plant which will get its supply from Wariu River.

“This plant will replace the old one,” he said, adding that the mud floods in Kadamaian river had caused extensive damage to both the main water treatment plants there causing them to be rendered unusable.

As a temporary relief measure, water would be distributed to the consumers in Kota Belud, he said, adding that water rationing would be able to help out in the scheduled distribution to the consumers.

Water rationing would not be able to resolve the problem fully but it can help to ensure that the water supply is more systematic and controlled, he opined.

“I have instructed Kota Belud water department to purchase 10 underground pumps and the machinery is expected to arrive three months from now.

With the increase in machinery, water supply can be increased especially to the consumers in the badly affected areas.

“Other than that booster pumps will also be installed at the Pandasan water treatment plant. I have also instructed the state Fire and Rescue Services Department to mobilize all its high capacity water tankers to supply water to mosques and nearby hospitals,” he said.

At the same time he will ensure the distribution of water tanks to all villages so that the villagers can store water.

“I will ensure that all efforts to improve the quality of life of the people in Kota Belud will continue to be carried out because the problems faced by the rakyat in Kota Belud are important and very near to my heart,” Abdul Rahman said.