The fundamental disagreement is this: About 4 years ago the Sing said Malaysia should have revised the price in 1987 and not later or lose that right.
OTOH, Mahathir had then asserted that the agreement says Malaysia can revise the price after 25 years of the agreement (signed in 1962) which was 1987 but the agreement doesn't say it must be done there and then in 1987, meaning the revision could be done much later, after 1987.
However, Singapore argued that its investment in the Linggiu Dam in Johor had been based on Malaysia not taking up its rights to revise the water price in 1987 or Sing would then not have invested in the dam.
Hmmm, maybe the Malaysian side had wanted Sing to invest in the dam so had kept quiet about the price revision, and subsequent to that, said: oops-a-daisy, we forgot about it, we actually wanted a price revision - wakakaka.
Now, deciding who's right will have to be the province of contractual lawyers, that is, assuming the current new Malaysian government wants to take up the issue. Perhaps with AG Tommy Thomas providing legal advice it may, wakakaka.
Just as a matter of interest, Clause 17 of the 1961 Agreement and Clause 14 of the 1962 Agreement state clearly: "The provisions of paragraphs (i) and (ii) of the foregoing clause of these presents shall be subject to review after the expiry of 25 years from the date of these presents ..."
Does twenty-five years after 1961 and 1962 respectively means any time after 1986 and 1987 respectively or immediately following these two dates, and not too subsequent to the two dates?
I am afraid, as mentioned, we have to let the lawyers look into the agreements, wakakaka.
But I'm also afraid Mahathir has a history of trying to get the better of Singapore [apart from the water price eg. crooked bridge, HSR, man-made island next to Middle Rocks, etc] and only succeeded on one score, that of the KTM land where his refusal previously to do anything with it, and to leave the land in developmental fallow frustrated land-hungry Sing (and very likely to his immense satisfaction].
But even that schadenfreude pleasure has been buggered by Najib who as PM approved cooperative development of the KTM land with Sing in 2010, no doubt to "retiree" Mahathir's immense chagrin, wakakaka. Another reason for Maddy to HATE Najib.