My three questions (No.34 to No. 36 on the 12th day in the current series) to Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat on the RM12.5 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal today are:
1. Since becoming Transport Minister, Ong had misled Parliament and the nation in denying that his two predecessors as Transport Minister, Tun Dr. Ling Liong Sik and Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy had unlawfully issued four Letters of Support to Kuala Dimensi Snd. Bhd (KDSB), the PKFZ turnkey contractor – to raise RM4 billion bonds, which were regarded as government guarantees by the market.
The Transport Minister had no such powers to issue financial guarantees committing the government, as it could only be issued by the Finance Minister and only after Cabinet approval.
The first Letter of Support was issued by Liong Sik on May 28, 2003, which was Liong Sik’s last day as Transport Minister. The other three “Letters of Support” were issued by Kong Choy on 23rd April 2004, 8th December 2005 and 23rd May 2006 all of which stated that ““the MOT (Ministry of Transport) shall at all times in the future ensure that PKA is in the position to meet (and do meet on a full and timely basis) their liabilities in respect of the Repayment Amount for so long as an amount in respect of the Repayment Amount remains outstanding”.
In recognition that the four unlawful “Letters of Support” issued by Liong Sik and Kong Choy as Transport Minister had nonetheless given implicit government guarantee to the market that the Cabinet had in July 2007 given retrospective approval for the unlawful and unauthorized four Letters of Support by the Transport Ministers in the past four years creating RM4.6 billion liability for the government in the bailout of PKFZ.
When will Ong admit that he had misled Parliament and the nation in denying that Liong Sik and Kong Choy had unlawfully issued the four Letters of Support resulting in the RM12.5 billion PKFZ burden to the Malaysian nation and people and tender a public apology for his Ministerial misconduct in the past 14 months?
2. What action Ong proposes to take against both Liong Sik and Kong Choy as well as government officials responsible for the unlawful issue of the four “Letters of Support”, resulting in the RM12.billion PKFZ burden to the people and nation?
3. Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Seri Chor Chee Heung yesterday launched the Audit and Assurance Standards Board and Ethics Standards Board at the Securities Commission yesterday.
He said “honesty, integrity, transparency and accountability” are key words in good corporate governance and hoped that the implementation of the two boards “will reinforce ongoing efforts by MIA (Malaysian Institute of Accountants) to meet stakeholders’ stringent expectations of audit quality and ethical behaviour among financial professionals”.
Doesn’t Ong find it sickening to hear such hypocritical spoutings when Chor has yet to give a full accounting of his Chairmanship of Port Klang Authority from April 2007 to March 2008,which saw the worsening of the PKFZ into a RM4.6 billion scandal, more than four times the original cost of RM1.1 billion and not set to become a RM12.5 billion monster scandal.
Why is Ong not asking Chor to resign as Deputy Finance Minister unless Chor can give proper accountability of his chairmanship of the PKA with regard to the PKFZ scandal?