BALIK PULAU, Sept 5 — Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow is hoping that Water and Environment Minister, Datuk Seri Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man can solve the water issue between Penang and Kedah.

Chow said Tuan Ibrahim should be responsible in ensuring that all states in the country had sufficient raw water supply.

“I feel that the minister concerned should see himself as a national minister who can tackle the water source problem involving states and not as a PAS minister as it involved a state (Kedah) under the leadership of PAS itself,” he said after the handing-out of the Penang flag to the state’s contingent to the Sukma Games 2022, here, today.

Chow said the Penang government would continue to raise the water issue at all the federal-level meetings it attended as it felt the problem did not involve one or two states but was a national issue.

He was earlier asked to comment on Tuan Ibrahim’s reported statement that Penang had a moral responsibility of paying Kedah for water supply sourced from Sungai Muda.

Last Friday, Tuan Ibrahim said Penang had the right to take water from Sungai Muda, but the water flow originated from the Ulu Muda forest in Kedah which should be conserved and protected from logging which caused the state’s loss of potential income.

Meanwhile, Perbadanan Bekalan Air Pulau Pinang Sdn Bhd (PBAPP) chief executive officer, Datuk Jaseni Maidinsa suggested that the federal government itself make efforts to obtain compensation for Kedah instead of forcing Penang to pay Kedah for water from Sungai Muda.

He said Penang was not paying Kedah for raw water from Sungai Muda as there was no legal requirement for Penang to pay for water abstracted from Sungai Muda.

“It is the duty of the Environment and Water Minister to obtain funds from the federal government to rehabilitate Ulu Muda and Sungai Muda instead of forcing Penang to pay Kedah (for the river water),” he added.

Jaseni said the federal government should be focusing on paying compensation for rehabilitating Ulu Muda and Sungai Muda in Kedah. — Bernama