KOTA KINABALU, Jan 11 — The Sabah State Water Department (JANS) is facing water bill arrears of up to RM262 million as more of its customers refused to pay their bills, according to Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Shahelmey Yahya.
Shahelmey, who is also state works minister, said the refusal of the customers to settle their water bills would affect the department’s revenue, consequently leading to financial implications.
Shahelmy, however, did not deny receiving feedback related to customers’ refusal to pay bills due to dissatisfaction with the frequently-disrupted water supply.
“Some say that they pay for nothing and so on, but that needs to be checked. As a customer, we have to be responsible, we use the water, we have to pay.
“For the past several years, JANS’ bill collection has been exceeding its annual target of between RM200 million and RM300 million. So, there are some customers who are paying their bills and being responsible,” he told reporters after launching MyJANS mobile application here today.
MyJANS is an initiative introduced by JANS to facilitate its customers in accessing services through the app, including information on water bills, notices, and complaints more easily, quickly, and securely at any time and from anywhere.
“The customer charter in the MyJANS app is such that upon receiving a complaint or feedback, a response is given within half an hour. Therefore, I advise the public, especially those making complaints, to provide positive cooperation to avoid wasting time on baseless or deliberately misleading reports.
“I was made to understand that a special team is handling this app, encompassing teams at the headquarters and in every district,” Shahelmy said, adding that the app currently records about 2,000 users.
On the water issue faced by Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS), Shahelmey said the department has taken several short-term solutions, including sending water tanker trucks to the university, as well as collaborating with UMS’s technical management department to control water pressure within the campus.
“This cooperation is crucial because the UMS campus is large and has hilly terrain. JANS will ensure water reaches UMS’s tanks, and UMS will play a role in managing water pressure within the campus environment,” he explained. — Bernama