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Chan Kong Choy should resign as Transport Minister if he is not prepared to break his four-year silence on the RM4.6 billion Port Klang Free Zone scandal or commission a Royal Commission of Inquiry

Media Statement (3)  
by Lim Kit Siang  

(Parliament, Monday): Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy should resign as Transport Minister if he is not prepared to break his four-year silence on the RM4.6 billionh Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal or secure Cabinet approval on Wednesday to establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry to bare all the facts about the scandal. 

Since becoming Transport Minister 2003, Chan had studiously ignored queries about the multi-billion ringgit malpractices and cost overruns at the Port Klang Free Zone, which had ballooned from a RM1.1 billion “self-financing” project which did not require a single sen of public funds to a RM4.6 billion scandal requiring government bail out using taxpayers’ monies. 

As the latest Sun expose on the PKFZ scandal revealed today, “red tape, political meddling, inaccurate minutes and attempted tax evasion real reasons Port Klang Free Zone deal collapsed”. 

Sun reporter R. Nadeswaran said in his commentary, “Bring PKFZ culprits to book”: 

“It was then the biggest financial fiasco in the country’s history – the Bumiputra Malaysia Finance (BMF) scandal of the Eighties which prompted the government to set up a Royal Commission of Inquiry.  The amount involved was less than RM2 billion. 

“Today, we have on our hands a scandal that would put the BMF affair in the shadows. More than RM4.6 billion has been spent on the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ), and behind the massive expenditure is an intrigue of family deals, demands, interference by politicians and government officers with vested interests, attempts at tax evasion, gigantic cost over-runs, unauthorized payments, influence peddling, cloak-and-dagger operations, and above all, a total lack of transparency and accountability and care-a-damn attitude by the key personalities involved.”

When Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi became Prime Minister, he had promised an end to such scandals of corruption, abuses of power, malpractices and total unaccountability. 

As I said at the Muar DAP Dinner on Saturday night, the whole weight of government machinery should be brought to bear to bring to book all the crooks and criminals responsible for the RM4.6 billion Port Klang Free Zone scandal, diverting RM4.6 billion of public funds which could be better used to improve the livelihood of Malays, Chinese, Indians, Kadazans and Ibans from the lower income groups, instead of the recent government obsession to persecute and demonize a 24-year-old student from Muar, Wee Meng Chee for his six-minute video-clip Negarakuku speaking unpleasant truths and  which had attracted over a million visits on YouTube. 

It will appear that for the first time in Barisan Nasional history, the first major scandal to erupt in a new premiership will come from a Ministry headed by a MCA Minister. 

This makes it even more compelling that Chan must come clean on the whole RM4.6 billion PKFZ scandal, have a Royal Commission of Inquiry or resign his Cabinet post.


* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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