Authorities urged to clear Sarawk River of dead fish pending completion of investigative reports

Voon Shiak Ni (file pic)

KUCHING, March 31: The relevant authorities have been urged to clear dead fishes from the Sarawak River while waiting for reports on their investigations to be completed.

Sarawak Special Officer to the Federal Housing and Local Government Ministry Voon Shiak Ni said it is worrying that the rotten fishes has yet to be cleared from the river and it is bound to pose a health hazard to members of the public.

A large number of dead fish have mysteriously appeared in the Sarawak River for the past few days.

“We are given to understand that investigations are ongoing into the cause of the dead fish in the Sarawak river by the Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) but the reports have yet to come in and the cause of the dead fish has yet to be determined,” Voon said in a statement today.

She also questioned past incidences a few years ago whereby large numbers of fishes were found dead in the rivers in Sarawak.

“Last year, dead fishes were found floating in the Reservoir Park pond for a few days. In 2017, a similar incident happened at the man-made lake at Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas). Thousands of dead fish were found dead floating on the surface of the lake and the same phenomenan was seen at the large man-made lake of the Friendship Park in Kuching at Jalan Song in 2007,” she said.

In 2014, dead fish and prawns were found floating along a few sections of the river under the Tun Salahuddin toll bridge in Pending.

For all these incidences, she added that complaints and reports were filed and investigations done by relevant authorities.

Voon lamented that although water pollution is not uncommon, it can be a serious health hazard to public health and the nation had just witnessed the dreaded disaster involving Sungai Kim Kim in Pasir Gudang, Johor which was polluted with chemical waste.

“Water pollution can be prevented as many of them are caused by acts of irresponsible people who either lack civic mindedness or are not aware of the dangers of dumping waste in rivers.

“In such circumstances, we suggest that reports of investigations done on all incidences of water pollution and the causes of dead fishes be shared with the public for public awareness as prevention is always better than cure,” she added. — DayakDaily