Pairin says no urgency yet for water rationing
KOTA KINABALU, Feb 24 (Daily Express)
-- Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan said
there is no plan to resort to water rationing as yet under
the current dry spell.
However, he would discuss the matter further during a briefing
with the Water Department. He also urged the public to look
into harvesting rain for water supply.
"Rain harvesting has now becoming a preferred method
in the peninsula and although it is probably viewed as an
inappropriate practice, when a drought comes, every one
seems to hope there is water stored somewhere," he
During the rainy season, there is too much rain water that
causes floods which destroy crops, and the whole world is
hoping for a global climate change. Yet in such a situation,
we should be wise enough to think about what we can do with
so much water, he said.
"For instance, if people accidentally created a fire,
it will become a big problem which destroys much infrastructure
such as a water catchment area, as what happened recently
in Kopungit," he said.
He was speaking at a press conference after the year's
first Patriotic Gathering of the Ministry of Infrastructure
Development with agencies under the ministry, held at the
Water Department Building in Penampang, on Tuesday. He said
everybody should be responsible enough to care as well as
support the government's long term planning to store water.
"We are also looking for more reservoirs to prevent
water from sapping right down into the earth or flowing
straight into the sea, as what is practised in Australia,
where the authority resorts to store water underground,"
According to Pairin, the current dry spell in the State
should act as a reminder that not too long ago, the State
was complaining over floods.
"I have read from the Meteorological Department's
reporting that the drought will last until the end of April
this year, another two months, although we are hoping that
it would be shorter," he said.
He said there are different levels of dry spells and if
the one described here is the one that contains intermittent
rainfall, that would not be so bad, as people can still
store rain water.
"However, if the dry spell mentioned is the one that
drags on for long time without the presence of rain, we
should start praying so that the dangerous type of dry spell
will not occur," he said.
Should the dry spell prolong, where it reaches a full month
without rain, it is absolutely difficult É nevertheless,
the Water Department has its SOP to handle such situations,
he said. Dry spells that cause bush fires should be a reminder
to all quarters involved, including the Fire Department,
of where the water resources should come from, said Pairin.
"Take for instance the situation a few years back
where there hill fires broke out in Tambunan and firemen
were unable to reach the area, so the people decided to
carry water up the hill to stop the burning.
"I hope we will not reach that level of desperation,
and hopefully everyone will be responsible enough not to
cause such incident which causes a lot of problems to everybody,"
Pairin, who is also Minister of Infrastructure Development
reminded all staff of the agencies and departments under
the Ministry to contemplate on the achievements accomplished
by them thus far.
"Prepare for yourself a plan, place a certain goal
or deadline to realise the much needed outcome in order
to avoid any failure or delay of projects which would prevent
development and affect the wellbeing of the people,"
He reminded them to focus on the six NKRA introduced by
the Government namely, lowering crime rate, fight against
corruption, better education, facilitate those with low
income, to improve the infrastructures of the interior,
and improve public transportation.
"The Key Performance Indicators formed under each
objective of the NKRA, demands full cooperation from all
in the ministry to ensure the realisation of Vision 2020,"