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Set up technical committees to revive dead rivers

Press Statement
by Dr Tan Seng Giaw  


(Kuala Lumpur, Wednesday) : I urge the Government to form suitable technical committees to revive dead rivers and polluted rivers in water catchment areas.

The statement by the Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid on 14 February, 2007 that he would obtain a full report of the ammonia pollution in Langat River in Hulu Langat and Selisik River in Hulu Selangor.

The meteorological office forecasts severe droughts after the floods. This makes the pollution of the above-stated rivers by ammonia an especially sensitive matter. Apparently, it resulted in the closure of three treatment plants, namely at Selisik River, 11th Mile Cheras and Tampoi Hill, Sepang. We hope that Azmi gets the report as soon as possible, so that he can identify the type, the extent and the source of pollution.

Hitherto, the Government has mentioned nine dead rivers in the country, that is they do not have fish, prawns and so forth. These are Juru River, Penang River and Jejawi River in Penang, Buloh River and Klang River in Selangor, Segget River, Kempas River, Danga River and Tukang Batu River in Johor.

The factors causing river pollution include silting from earthworks, solid waste, leachage from dumpsites, discharge from food premises, wet markets, factories, and animal farms.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment says that there is a four-year programme to clean the Klang River and a technical committee to carry out the activities. Besides the Klang River, the minister should set up appropriate technical committees to clean dead rivers and other polluted rivers in water catchment areas such as Langat River and Selisik River.


*Dr Tan Seng Giaw ,  DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong

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