Environment and Water Minister Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man has promised that the suspects behind the river pollution that led to water cuts in the Klang Valley will be prosecuted and plans to provide tougher punishments will be expedited.
Nearly 100 of his PAS party members today gathered at the Rawang factory suspected of causing the pollution to protest.
Sin Chew Daily reported that a vehicle had tried to leave the factory, which was ordered shut by the local council, but was forced to turn back due to the angry protesters. The group later dispersed on police advice.
Meanwhile, the PAS deputy president promised that those responsible will be prosecuted next week.
"I stress that the ministry will not compromise in enforcing the law.
"The prosecution process will take place next week against the offenders under the Environmental Quality Act 1974 and Water Services Industry Act 2006," Tuan Ibrahim said in a statement.
A task force comprising state and federal agencies including the National Water Services Commission (Span), Department of Environment (DOE), Selangor Water Management Authority (Luas) and local government are already taking enforcement actions, he added.
He also reiterated the government's commitment to amend the Environmental Quality Act 1974 and Water Services Industry Act 2006, and promised to expedite the process.
"As I have stated previously, this amendment will be expedited so that tough punishment can be meted out against offenders so that the punishment commensurates with the offence and to serve as a lesson," he said.
The pollutants which were discharged into Sungai Gong led to the closure of the Sungai Selangor Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3 and Rantau Panjang water treatment plants on Sept 3.
This caused 1,292 areas in the Klang Valley to go without water.
Air Selangor has commenced water distribution from the treatment plants at noon today and the process is expected to take until Sept 9.
In the interim, Tuan Ibrahim said he has instructed water agencies in other states to help with the distribution of water through tankers.
"Air Selangor has mobilised 114 tankers including nine from other states, it has also provided 22 public taps, stationed 70 static tanks at 19 community centres and distributed five litres of water to affected users," he said.
He added that water restoration for 51.6 percent of users is underway with the rest to see their water supply restored in stages.