RM4.5 million Belum complex
collapse – game of passing the buck begins with Tajol blaming Ramli Ngah
by Lim Kit Siang
The “passing-the-buck” game
over the collapse of the RM4.5 million Perak State Park Corporation
complex in the Royal Belum State Park, Perak has begun, with the Perak
Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohd Tajol Rosli Ghazali blaming his predecessor
Tan Sri Ramli Ngah for the debacle.
Who is really responsible for the collapse of the RM4.5 million Belum
complex – Tajol or Ramli?
After visiting the Pulau Banding site of the collapsed structure in Grik
yesterday, Tajol described the complex as a project that had never been
viable and had been problematic from the start.
This is what he said in the New Straits Times report today:
"How can you spend RM4.5
million for a complex that has only 14 rooms?"
"I am really frustrated (with the whole project). As an accountant, I knew
that it would be a problem to manage due to the limited number of rooms.
You need at least 50 rooms for such a place to be economically viable."
Tajol said there were
developers in Ipoh who could build a complex or resort with 100 rooms on a
budget of only RM8 million.
He cited poor interior design as one of the problems of the complex, which
was to be a one-stop centre for tourists.
He said: "It was too late for me to stop the project as it was already
being constructed then (when he became MB)."
Tajol made no mention of the real cause of the collapse of the complex,
which cannot be its lack of economic viability, but can only be due to
failures of engineering design or construction as well as irresponsibility
of contractor/sub-contractor and government supervision.
So who is at fault – Tajol or Ramli? Tajol took over as Perak Mentri Besar
from Ramli Ngah in December 1999.
Is it possible for Tajol just to wash his hands of responsibility so
easily simply on the ground that it was “too late” for him to intervene in
If so, this should be additional reason for him to support an independent
public inquiry into the collapse of the RM4.5 million Belum complex, to
fully exonerate him of any responsibility for the collapse of the
Ramli, who is Speaker of Parliament, should not object to an emergency
debate in Parliament on Monday on the collapse of the RM4.5 million Belum
complex, which will be his strong defense that he has nothing to hide.
With the collapse of the Belum complex, sub-standard government delivery
system in Malaysia has entered a new phase from new public buildings
“cracking up” or leaking to simply collapsing.
Although this is unprecedented, it is nothing to be proud but cause for
shame for the government, whether at state or national level.
As Tajol has openly passed the buck and put the blame on his predecessor,
it is also time for Ramli to present to the public his case as to whether
he accepts or refutes the Perak Mentri Besar’s kicking the ball to him.
Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic
Planning Commission Chairman