By Wilfred Pilo
SRI AMAN, Jan 4: Chinese community leader Kapitan Tay Siaw Chuan dreads every single waking hour for many months now.
Everywhere he goes, Sri Aman folks badger him with the same old questions over and over again. He had told them a million times that he does not have the answers, but he remains the target of verbal assaults just because he is a community leader.
The reason for all these? Prolonged water woes.
“People here feel cheated, and community leaders like me get bombarded for no reason … as if it is our fault. Why should the public get angry us when we are not JBALB (Rural Water Supply Department)?” he asked when contacted by DayakDaily today.
“We (community leaders) have explained many times to the people, but how many more explanations can we give to these innocent people? We don’t know the answer, and we hope JBALB can do something constructive, and do it quickly.”
Tay lamented that the constant water supply interruption in Sri Aman town has been dragging on for months now, and he estimated about 15,000 people are affected.
“The people of Sri Aman town are in a desperate situation, and this issue needs to be highlighted to air everybody’s frustration as they are not getting the service they deserve from JBALB,” he said.
He said he had called JBALB to sort out the problem, but all he got in return after each and every call are excuses.
Ironically, a new water treatment plant was commissioned recently and new pipes were laid months ago, but the taps in homes and business premises remained dry.
“Residents and the business community complained to me that when they do get water, what comes out from the taps are milky and brownish. In short, they are unfit for human consumption,” said Tay, adding that highly populated areas like Jalan Brayun are badly hit.
“Earlier, when JBALB said they were doing maintenance and repairs and changing water pipes, we understood. But that was a long time ago and many of these works have been completed. So what is wrong now?”
Tay said Sri Aman folk are worried about their health and hygiene because there is no water to bathe, to wash plates and cups, for drinking, cooking and to flush toilets.
DayakDaily did call a few residents in Sri Aman, and they are very unhappy with the situation they are in.— DayakDaily