Some quarters felt the move was unfair when the corporation should review its own financial spending especially in rewarding its top management, and felt the hike should be confined to commercial consumers like developers.
Penang Gerakan legal and human rights bureau chief Baljit Singh said PBAPP and its board chairman, Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng should declare the amount it spent on bonuses, allowances and other perks to its upper management.
He felt the corporation should justify the decision to pass on the financial burden on the people.
He said water rates were low during Barisan Nasional’s time and the corporation should show the people that it was competent in financial management.
“Show us your (PBAPP’s) accounts and let the people see if the corporation has an increased expenditure. Be transparent.
“Also declare to the public the amount of bonuses and allowances, as well as other perks, the chairman and directors of the corporation enjoy,” he said today.
PBAPP announced on Friday that Penang consumers would be paying double the domestic water conservation surcharge for every 1,000 litres should their water usage exceeded 35,000 litres per month.
It was reported that the unprecedented 100 per cent surcharge from 24 sen to 48 sen beginning Sept 1 was to promote prudent water usage with Penang being a water-stressed state.
A senior lawyer in Penang, Ranjit Singh Dhillon also questioned the surcharge hike, saying that foreigners and heavy water consumers like developers should be the ones charged extra.
“The PBAPP should not penalise domestic users. It will put a dent in their household budget,” he said while also criticising the state government for not indicating that a new surcharge would be introduced before this.
It was also reported that the Penang Malay Congress wanted the state government to postpone the decision, calling it an unfair move that caught the people off-guard.