SHAH ALAM, 19 Feb – A series of statewide tour named ‘Jelajah Forum Air Untuk Rakyat’ (Water for the People Forum Tour) is set to go. The tour aims to fill the final leg of February explaining to the citizens of Selangor the truth concealed under Barisan Nasional’s heightened defamations against the current Pakatan Rakyat-led state government.
According to Selangor Menteri Besar, Khalid Ibrahim, the tour — taking place for a consecutive ten nights from 18 until 28 February — is meant to explain to the people about the plans and measures that will be taken by the state government after the planned takeover of the state’s water services.
“The state government is stressing that this is not a usual commercial company takeover, as the water concession agreements involve three parties, which are Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (SYABAS), the federal government and the state government, whose shareholders are the rakyat.”
“The transactions should not solely be profit orientated, but it should concentrate on the importance of the people’s welfare as well,” Khalid said, in a statement.
Khalid has urged the BN-led federal government, which owns the golden share in SYABAS to use its power in ensuring that the water concessionaire accepts the Selangor state government’s offer, as the issue of restructuring of the water industry involves the people’s interests.
“We have prepared the offer letter for the concessionaire (SYABAS), hoping that they won’t make the price as an issue to refuse the offer,”
“We have reiterated that the concessionaire could bring this matter to the International Arbiter to obtain the duly compensation,” he said.
Among the panelists involved in the 10-day tour series are, Member of Parliament for Kuala Selangor, Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad; Member of Parliament for Klang, Charles Santiago; Member of Parliament for Lembah Pantai, Nurul Izzah Anwar; Member of Parliament for Petaling Jaya Utara, Tony Pua; PKR Strategic Advisor, Rafizi Ramli and Political Secretary for the Menteri Besar, Faekah Husin.
Despite the strikingly poor performance by water concessionaire SYABAS, BN has been aggressively pressuring the Selangor state government to retain the private company status of the water distribution concessionaire linked to ruling regime’s cronies, refusing any offer of takeover by the PR-led state government. — The Rocket