Press Statement by DAP Secretary-General and MP for Bagan Lim Guan Eng in Kuala Lumpur on 8.11.2012
It has been reported today that Transport Minister Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha stated that he has no obligation, responsibility or interest in knowing the identity and background of the biggest shareholder of one of the two contractors for the devious Automated Enforcement System (AES) 1Malaysia cameras.
On Monday, PKR central committee member Chang Lih Kang alleged that one of the two firms given the AES contract has links with Johor UMNO, whereby the largest shareholder of the firm is the eldest child of a division chief and the deputy Wanita UMNO chief of Johor. Both parents and a cousin are also said to be state assemblymen.
According to the Oriental Daily News, Kong was also quoted as saying that he has no relationship with the shareholder and that the contract to the two firms had been approved by the Cabinet in 2008 before he was appointed to his current post.
It is preposterous for Kong as a Minister to dismiss these allegations and shrug off responsibility by saying that he has no obligation, responsibility or interest to know the identity and background of the people involved. If Kong really doesn’t know such important details of the AES 1Malaysia cameras, then he should suspend it with immediate effect. If Kong is unwilling to suspend the implementation of the AES 1Malaysia cameras, then he should resign rather than adopt an “ostrich in the sand” approach and blindly support something that he does not know about.
Kong should therefore either suspend the AES 1Malaysia cameras immediately or resign, as it is shocking and unthinkable that we have such a “know nothing, do nothing” Minister who would rather knowingly support something that has caused great public unhappiness.
Malaysians deserve the right to know the truth because the award of the contract had not been done through open competitive tender. In 2006, 9 companies participated in an invited tender by the Ministry of Transport, out of which only 7 submitted proposals. As a result, the issuing of summons has now been commercialised and privatised in a sweetheart deal which will see the 2 concessionaires get a commission from every summons issued from the 831 cameras that will be installed throughout the country. This profit-sharing agreement is clearly not in the public interest and done solely for the private profiteering of BN crony companies.
The AES 1Malaysia cameras are now the subject of strenuous opposition from both sides of the divide including from the BN backbenches. Clearly there is a double game being played as on the one hand the AES 1Malaysia cameras are approved by the Cabinet but on the other hand it is being attacked by UMNO Youth and Gerakan. BN’s confusion must be a symptom of electionitis, as they are desperately trying to wriggle their way into the voters’ good books but at the same are actually the real culprits behind this scandal.
LIM GUAN ENG