Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Saturday, 19th September 2009:
Why didn’t Attorney-General Gani Patail prosecute previous Transport Ministers Ling Liong Sik and Chan Kong Choy for unlawfully issuing four Letters of Support landing the taxpayers with the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal?
Today’s media report top government leaders virtually falling upon one another in their competition to denounce and declare action being taken against fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin and Malaysia-Today website under the Official Secrets Act for leaking on the Internet an 18-page Treasury Memorandum to the Cabinet in June 2007 on the RM12.5 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal.
Led by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, those who had spoken of action under the Official Secrets Act include the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin, the Attorney-General Tan Sri Gani Patail, the Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar and Director of Commercial Criminal Investigation Department, Datuk Koh Hong Sun.
However, none of them has shown any concern about the right to know of Malaysians about the hows and whys the taxpayers are being burdened with the “mother of all scandals” – the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal running through three Prime Ministers, three Finance Ministers and four Port Klang Authority Chairmen.
Najib said: “We will inform the people what we should concerning the case and we will do so later but that is no excuse to reveal cabinet papers.”
The question Najib has failed to answer is why the Cabinet papers on the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal should continue to be kept as secret documents instead of being declassified, unless the Barisan Nasional has skeletons in the cupboard which must be kept hidden from public knowledge and scrutiny.
As former member of the Cabinet, the Chairman of Public Accounts Committee, Datuk Azmi Khalid would have access and digested the Cabinet documents on the PKFZ scandal.
Why didn’t the PAC, under his chairmanship, summon the Chief Secretary Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Hassan to appear to help the PAC inquiry into the PKFZ scandal and testify as to the information given to the Ministers and the decisions taken by the Cabinet on the issue?
Shouldn’t the PAC take a stand that all the Cabinet documents and papers relating to the PKFZ scandal should be declassified not only for full study by the PAC buit also by all MPs and the Malaysian public – unless there are skeletons which must be kept hidden?
In the PAC hearing on August 12, the Attorney-General Gani Patail had made clear his position that the four Letters of Support issued by the two previous Transport Ministers Tun Dr. Ling Liong Sik and Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy from 2003 - 2006 for the RM4 billion bonds by the PKFZ turnkey contractor Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd (KDSB) – and which has landed the government with the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal – were in fact Letters of Guarantee and had been unlawfully issued.
The next logical question is why the Attorney-General did not prosecute the two former Transport Ministers for unlawfully issuing the four Letters of Support landing the taxpayers with the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal?
This is the question which the Attorney-General and the government leadership should be answering instead of running after Raja Petra and Malaysia-Today under the Official Secrets Act for their role as whistleblowers.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor