KUALA LUMPUR: Putrajaya is ready to act as a facilitator between Penang and Kedah to help resolve the latter’s demand for payment for raw water drawn from Sungai Muda.
Natural resources, environment and climate change minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad said the matter fell under the jurisdiction of the states themselves, based on the Ninth Schedule of the Federal Constitution.
“Therefore, this issue needs to be handled via consensus so that a mutually beneficial solution can be agreed upon.
“The government is ready to act as a facilitator in resolving this issue, subject to the requests and agreement of both state governments,” he said in a written Dewan Rakyat reply.
Nik Nazmi was replying to Hassan Saad (PN-Baling) who asked if the ministry planned to act as a mediator to resolve the issue which has become a point of contention between both state governments.
Penang taps water from the shared Sungai Muda in Kepala Batas, processes it in Butterworth, and supplies it to 80% of its 1.78 million population.
The Penang government has refused to pay for the water despite repeated demands from Kedah menteri besar Sanusi Nor.