RM4.6 bil PKFZ bailout scandal – nobody accountable for two weeks when Kong Choy on medical leave?

When Malaysians heard or read the news about the RM4.1 billion investment from the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) countries for the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) in Johore, their first thought would be that Malaysians themselves have this amount of money to spare if they do not have to be squandered in a bailout of the RM4.6 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PFZ) scandal.

Up to now, there has been no proper and full accountability as to how the PKFZ, touted as a feasible and self-financing project which would not require a single ringgit of public funds, has ended up as a RM4.6 billion burden of the taxpayers.

This is why the report today that the Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy has gone on medical leave for health reasons attracted more than its usual share of attention.

His press secretary said Chan has to go abroad for a medical check-up and consultation.

I wish Chan speedy recovery, although two questions jostle for answer:

Firstly, is Chan another example of the present crop of Cabinet Ministers who have no confidence in Malaysian specialists and medical expertise that one after another has to go overseas for medical treatment and consultation. This question is particularly poignant when the Health Minister is another MCA leader, Datuk Dr. Chua Soi Lek.

Secondly, does this mean that for a fortnight, no one from the Transport Ministry need to be responsible to give full accountability for the RM4.6 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) bailout scandal.

Knowing that he had to go on medical leave for two weeks, Chan was being most irresponsible in failing to give a full and proper accounting of the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout scandal in his written answer to my question in Parliament on Tuesday.

In his answer, apart from making a bald claim that there was no fraud, irregularity or malpractice, Chan failed to address the specific issues which I had highlighted in my urgent motion on the PKFZ bailout scandal on Monday but which was rejected by the Speaker, Tan Sri Ramli Ngah as not complying withy the three prequisite requirements of being urgent, definite public importance.

Chan was given five days’ notice that among the issues I had wanted to highlight in my urgent motion last Monday were:

  • (i) Hanky-panky in the purchase of the 1,000 acres for the PKFZ, despite objections by the Finance Ministry and the Attorney-General’s Chambers;

    (ii) mismanagement resulting in the pull-out of Jebel Ali Free Trade Zone (Jafza) from the project, which could become a “white elephant”; and

    (iii) questionable cost-overruns of the PKFZ, ballooning to RM4.63 billion from the original estimate of RM1.1 billion.

  • The unlawful and unauthorized Transport Ministry issue of four “letters of support” which were used by the turnkey contractor – Kuala Dimensi Sdn Bhd (KDSB) – to raise RM4.6 billion bonds and get an AAA rating from the Malaysia Rating Corporation Bhd. for PKFZ.
  • Why the government and the 26 million Malaysians must now bear responsibility if there is a RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout despite earlier assurances that the PKFZ project would be feasible, self-financing and would not involve a single ringgit of public funds.

Chan had failed to act in accordance with the principles of accountability, transparency and good governance in completely evading these issues in his written answer on the PKFZ scandal in Parliament on Tuesday.

Who is the Acting Transport Minister during Chan’s two-week medical leave and will he be fully empowered to give a full accounting of the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout scandal, or he will only have a stock reply: “I do not know. Wait until Chan returns from leave”?

  1. #1 by Chong Zhemin on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 4:39 pm

    Uncle kit,

    Still remember when rafidah went oversea for operation during the AP scandal. Now Chan Kong Choy is on medical leave. What a good timing!

  2. #2 by shiver on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:04 pm

    this is the saddest part of it all, nobody will take accountability and when everything is over and done with (maybe after a few weeks) when again the mainstream promotes feel good factors again, then all will be forgotten. life goes on. next thing you know, we suddenly will have increase in this and that to “cover” back for that RM4billion losses. i already sense thats what they will do. everything (again) will go up and the penderitaan rakyat will continue to be exploited.

    dear YB, continue and press. we must get someone to admit somewhere they made a mistake and its their fault. we just dont want a fall guy but we want accountability.

    happy merdeka to you guys. the fight is still long and hard, but we shall perservere! wear yellow tomorrow!

  3. #3 by ADAM YONG IBNI ABDULLAH on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:06 pm

    WHILE the malaysian government is promoting health tourism, the ministers are going abroad for medical treatment.

    cakap satu,buat yang lain.

    again, it appears that malaysian ministers, have this ELOPE SYNDROME of running away to another country when pressured for answers.

    coincidence – like rafidah during the ap heat.

    sorry . chan kong choi.to note that you are sick from something that malaysia’s medical specialist cannot treat. suggest ,than you step down for health reason.

  4. #4 by ihavesomethingtosay on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:13 pm

    run, run, run far away….

    far, far away chicken kong choy run,

    fast faster chicken kong choy run.

  5. #5 by ahkok1982 on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:19 pm

    Many questions to be asked here:
    1) what sickness did he get?
    2) can’t it be treated locally?
    3) which country did he go to?
    4) can he produce any evidence that he actually went to consult a specialist overseas?

    he tries to lie to run away overseas, then use this chance to hantam him more!

  6. #6 by ADAM YONG IBNI ABDULLAH on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:21 pm


    SYABAS AND hats off to yb karpal singh. he works around in his wheel chair as an officer of the court and also as a wakil raayat.
    i have NOT read about him going overseas for check up.

    kong choy have no faith in our malaysia medical systems and certainly no confidence in malaysian specialist.

    chua soil lek . any comment?

    is he on unpaid leave ????????

    fong – the slave master of labour minister. minister can apply leave within 24 hours? dont have to submit at least one week notice like us. ? labour minister .please comment>

    malaysia . apa pun bolih.

  7. #7 by smeagroo on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:29 pm

    “choi tor san chee yeuk”

    Lotsa money, ill health.

    Must quickly go Swiss and settle some financial matters.

    Aca-aje wont be able to find anything.

    I heard Swiss got lotsa good docs.

  8. #8 by St0rmFury on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 5:30 pm

    Hey, a heads up for those who are wearing yellow tomorrow or even tonight, please speak to others who are doing the same when you see them and try to get all of us to sit/stand together. Wearing yellow won’t make any difference if we are all scattered around, we must be united in order to be noticed.

    I will be doing that at Merdeka stadium tomorrow night so if you see a small group of yellow shirted people moving around and joining together, you know what to do.


  9. #9 by shortie kiasu on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 6:03 pm

    He wants taxpayers to foot all his bills while overseas!

    What happen to our local medical facilities and specialists?

    According to press report he went for check up only, why all the expenses to go overseas? Quite sure he is payng a cent out of his pocket.

    It is either paid by taxpayers or if there is a limit to his expenses, he will get some sponsors to foot his bill while overseas.

    Two weeks for a medical check up overseas id really taxing the taxpayers and also country resources, typical of Malaysian ministers. This is not called patrioticism, he would be absent from merdeka celebration.

  10. #10 by hkh on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 6:16 pm

    Divertion tactics (Namewee, M Osai, Islamic State, Monkeys, Kris) did not work, so the next best thing to do is “TO RUN”.
    Malaysians got short memory, 2 weeks is good enough to lose the heat.

  11. #11 by boh-liao on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 6:50 pm

    When Kong Choy said “choy, everything is in order”, then everything is in order.

    Furthermore, why worry? More easy money is coming into the country, including the RM4.1 billion investment from the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) countries.

    The government will continue with its largesse system of governance. Anyone wishes to join the juicy train?


  12. #12 by k1980 on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 7:39 pm

    A growing scandal surrounding a plan to develop the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ), scheduled to become the largest such facility in Southeast Asia, has further tarred Abdullah Badawi’s corruption-busting credentials in the run-up to general elections

    The project’s viability was apparently sunk from the start with the PKA’s land buy; property which many have described as “swamp-like”. The price was apparently inflated well beyond the prevailing market rates by Kuala Dimensi which had originally purchased 250 hectares of the agricultural land in 1999 at three ringgit per square foot from a cooperative group of ethnic Malay fishing families….a mass of unoccupied buildings, some still under construction, fills the area. Of the 512 light industrial units, for instance, only about a dozen are reportedly occupied. Because the company commenced operations less than a year ago, there have been no publicly released profit or loss statements….

    The sad part is that very few Malaysians seem surprised – given the ruling coalition’s well-established record of ambitious plans, wasteful spending that has plagued the country since the 1980s. But the apparent poor planning, dodgy deal-making, cost over-runs, unauthorized guarantees and alleged attempts at tax evasion is emerging as one of the biggest embarrassments for Abdullah’s three-year-old administration and likely means his political strategists will need to drum up a different campaign slogan to support his upcoming re-election bid.

  13. #13 by bystander on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 9:01 pm

    Of course, there is hanky panky. i did study and valuation of pulau indah before. 1000 acres raw land is probably worth about RM 3 psf. RM 15 psf by the govt valuers is being very very generous. Even now RM 15 psf is land with all infra in place and generally for land of around 5 to 10 acres. Believe me, for 1000 acres without infra at RM 25 psf is FRAUD.

  14. #14 by sheriff singh on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 9:46 pm

    When the going gets tough,
    The Minister goes on MC.

    If he cannot stand the heat,
    “Pak Choy” should give up his seat.

  15. #15 by Justicewanted on Thursday, 30 August 2007 - 10:31 pm

    The Cabinet/government looks like Old MacDonald’s farm.

    First the PM has goats

    Now the Transport minister become a ‘chicken’ by hiding for two weeks

    We also have monkey @ monyet @ beruk on fourth floor

    Anyway Happy Merdeka

  16. #16 by mendela on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:05 am

    CKC is just a running dog.

    Yes, he runs like a dog.

  17. #17 by Richard Teo on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:31 am

    Who are the beneficiaries of the sale of land to PKA? Kuala Dimensi? who are the shareholders? Can someone please enlighten.looks like this will lead to MCA and UMNO members.May thiese rotten politicians rot in Hell. No wonder the original investors Jebai Ali from Dubai abandon ship. The whole deal smells rotten

  18. #18 by takazawa on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 2:33 am

    I guess he would use the brain drain phenomenon in the Malaysian medical field as an excuse to go overseas for a medical checkup. But then, that would be contradicting his manifesto because he’s not giving our local medical practitioners a chance to prove their worth even though they may not be as pro as those foreign ones. Undoubtedly, our local ones are more value for money. He is deemed unpatriotic because the money is spent overseas to boost the economy of a foreign country instead of locally to boost our nation’s economy.

  19. #19 by nukie on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 2:48 am

    Do you think he is on unpaid leave? Probably someone is paying all his bills to get him away from Malaysia while this issue is still in the hotpot. Do you think this is just the coincidence?

    My beloved Malaysia is on its way down, my dear friends…

  20. #20 by takazawa on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 2:48 am

    YB Kit,

    Do whatever it takes to get him or his proxy accountable for the 4.6 billion which will mean depriving the livelihood of many lower income groups.

    In my workplace, even if my manager is away for one day, he would still appoint someone as an acting manager because being away for one day makes a world of difference, and he needs that someone to follow up with daily cases and update him once he’s back. If a Sdn Bhd company like mine needs to implement such policy, how much more should the Cabinet which decides the fate of this country do the same.

  21. #21 by NextNoName on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 6:41 am

    Building a more equitable society is the reason oft-cited for various discriminatory ethnic policies targeting the nation’s minorities. Yet the methodology for the figure of 18.9% Bumiputra ownership of the nation’s wealth is still a secret today, even after the PM Abdullah had promised to make the methodology public a year ago.

    The present RM4.6 bil scandal is of the same vein.

  22. #22 by Libra2 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 7:45 am

    All these MCA Ministers not only go overseas for their medical treatment but also send their children to study abroad with an advice not to return home on completion of their studies.
    When these MCA leaders are deposed, they too will migrate to Australia with the PR status in hand, which I presume is hidden somewhere in their closet even today. I am also sure they have purchased houses elsewhere.
    And these are the fighters of the Chinese Community!!!!!!!!!!

  23. #23 by Justicewanted on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 8:37 am

    Going oversea for medical treatment?

    No confident in own MCA member who is the Health Minister, Chua Soi Lek.

    MCA, if that is the case how do the Chinese have confident in you or the Government which you are part of??????

  24. #24 by k1980 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 8:51 am

    Answers to ahkok1982’s questions:
    1) what sickness did he get? —pkfzphobia
    2) can’t it be treated locally? —yes, but very, very embarrasing
    3) which country did he go to? —the most expensive ones, of course. You expect him to go to Somalia or the Congo?
    4) can he produce any evidence that he actually went to consult a specialist overseas? —oops, receipts eaten by his dog

  25. #25 by boh-liao on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 9:47 am

    Perception, perception.

    Law-abiding kia si people think this PKFZ bailout thingy is a scandal and an embarrassment for Abdullah’s administration, the cabinet, UMNO, and MCA.

    Ha, ha! Do you think Umnoputras and MCA opportunistic scavengers regard this as a scandal and are embarrassed over this issue? To them, it is just another god-sent opportunity to fatten their bank accounts, to buy more overseas properties, and to enjoy holidays all over the world.

    They know that after an initial round of ruckus by only a tiny portion of the populace (i.e., the people who always think of SNAFU), calm and silence will prevail and all is forgotten, as is evident in every issue raised by the same tiny group of irritating self-claimed patriots/nationalists, who are always worried about the downfall of Malaysia under the avalanche of corruption, cronyism, nepotism, bailout, mega-projects, etc.

    Most likely CKC’s medical leave is just a smokescreen for him and his family to visit their children who are studying overseas and to have a family reunion and holiday, while the heat of PKFZ cools down.

  26. #26 by Godfather on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 10:21 am

    Malaysians mudah lupa…so running away for a while is always a good tactic.

  27. #27 by badak on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 11:37 am

    Tourism minister said ,Malaysia is making tons of money on Medical Tourism.Transport Minister said,My pocket hurts , All doctors in Malaysia cannot help only my Banker overseas can help. B. N. BOLEH B.N BOLEH. HIDUP B.N

    We are missing the big picture here,PAK CHOY is just a puppet his strings being pull by UMNO .Just look who controls KUALA DIMENSI. Ahh yoh why lah… so blind .Next scandle please , After two weeks we will SAY PAK CHOY WHO ….

  28. #28 by k1980 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 11:46 am

    With conservative Islam on the rise in Malaysia, non-Muslims have begun to complain that their constitutional right to freedom of worship and to secular government are being compromised. The Malay deputy premier recently called Malaysia an Islamic state, angering non-Muslims. Increasingly, leaders of the multi-racial government are urging Malaysians to heed the lessons of 1969, when racial tensions burst into deadly riots…

    “Today, after 50 years of nationhood, we realize that we cannot take unity-in-diversity for granted. What divides us has become more accentuated than what unites us,” the Christian Federation of Malaysia said in a “national day message”.

    “Signs of polarization along ethnic and religious lines, along with all forms of chauvinism, racism and superiority are eroding our national unity.”

  29. #29 by badak on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:23 pm

    Before when i give an open open house ,All my Malay friends will come, eat drink and be merry, Now they will ask ” Is the food prepared by a Malay.If its not they wont come ..Where did we go wrong, After 50 yrs ..

  30. #30 by taikohtai on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:25 pm

    In Western countries, the surname is the last name.
    Hence Chan Kong Choy will be known as
    Kong Choy Chan.
    Coffin in Cantonese is Kon Choy.
    Henceforth, unless he can redeem himself, this Datuk Seri might well have landed himself a new nick.
    You have been forewarned……………..

  31. #31 by lbn on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:31 pm

    YB Kit,

    Don’t let this get away. We don’t want only TALK. Prove to us that DAP perform its role effectively. Persist till succeed no matter what! Then my vote and more will be for DAP.

  32. #32 by k1980 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 12:51 pm

    Coffin in Cantonese is Kon Choy—- don’t be so rude to poor rich uncle CKC. Pandithan took one to MIC HQ for uncle sammy and look what’s become of him, dying in a hospital bed

  33. #33 by bystander on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 1:59 pm

    PKFZ is a blatant case of FRAUD. No 2 ways about it. Somebody or many bodies must have lined his or their pockets. UMNO/BN could have used part of the money for money politics to buy votes.

  34. #34 by AhPek on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 3:10 pm

    As far as we ordinary street Joes are concerned this PKFZ thing is big time swindling by BIG TIME SWINDLERS (these professionals are only found in BN and in great abundance in UMNO).
    The PM will then come out with a sandiwara —“We will investigate.”. Result of the investigation is nobody is responsible to this unfortunate bungle and the government will give a soft loan to PKA to tide over this period.When PKA is unable to repay which will certainly be the case, the soft loan then becomes a write-off.At the end of the day,soft loan=bailout.QED.

  35. #35 by raven77 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 3:21 pm

    But Kong Choy and many of us have something in common…..we are all not celebrating…….merdeka….

  36. #36 by AhPek on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 3:24 pm

    Hi Chua Soi Lek,
    How come you are not offended by Chan Kong Choy’s lack of confidence in your Ministry’s capable staff? Is it not telling on your management of the ministry?
    How come like that one,coming from the same party also don’t give face ah?
    Well maybe he is only doing a sandiwara.Tell boss sick lah, like having an incurable disease only overseas expert can cure one.Sounds better what to the public’s ear especially trying to go overseas to escape the heavy bombardment raining down on his head.He must also be cursing Ling Liong Sik and Yap Piang Hong for not taking their fair share of the bombardment!

  37. #37 by raven77 on Friday, 31 August 2007 - 4:00 pm

    Soi Lek signed the MC maaaa……

  38. #38 by art-upon-mu on Saturday, 1 September 2007 - 3:08 am

    Chua SL must be also waiting for the right moment and his turn to go on medical leave overseas. Let’s see.

    The PKFZ expenditure must be high because it went through two groups of leaders or suckers (TDM & LLS and AAB & CKC). Just imagine PKFZ was raped twice. Now the suckers/rapists are happy – one for me, one for you.

    What about untouchable Zakaria? Did he or does he have a finger in the juicy pie?

  39. #39 by Boneka on Saturday, 1 September 2007 - 4:09 pm

    The Speaker, Tan Sri Ramli Ngah considered the matter as “not complying with the three prequisite requirements to be Urgent, Definite and of Public Importance”. ! If a project which was stated “would not require a single ringgit of public funds” has ended up as a RM4.6 billion burden of the taxpayers, he (Speaker) does not consider it as an important and urgent matter – what an idiot he can be!? If an illegal and unexplainable outlay of RM4.6 billion is not, what is? It only reflects on the lack of caliber and quality of the position of Speaker.
    I am not surprised that MPs like “Kinabinatangan”, Jasin and others behave the way they do. “Go To Hell” with democracy and transparency is what they are practising.

  40. #40 by ktteokt on Sunday, 2 September 2007 - 7:35 pm

    Know what the famous Chinese proverb says? “Local ginger not spicy enough” – this is the reason why our Minister Chan is going abroad for a “medical examination”. But don’t forget, his comrade buddy Dato Chua is a doctor and head of the Ministry of Health. How come no support from him? No confidence in local doctors under the leadership of his own comrade? What illness or disease is he suffering from? Why the good timing?

    “Running away from a problem never solves it”. That was what my teacher in primary school taught me way back in the sixties. How come such a “highly respected” man like Minister Chan doesn’t know such simple logic? Will the problem die away by itself if he runs away for two weeks? Or does he think Malaysians are so absent-minded as to forget such a big blunder after fourteen days? Unless he intends to run away forever, the problem will always be there, waiting for him. Come on, be a gentleman and face the problem to solve it. Show Malaysians that MCA has capable hands to handle problems, not create them.

    Look at Samy Vellu, at least he is not running away but only denying the faults and blunders connected with the Ampang highway, the Kepong flyover, the new courts complex, renovations at the parliament house and the collapse of the ceiling in the syariah court.

  41. #41 by mickey01 on Monday, 3 September 2007 - 7:12 am

    The 4.6b bailout scandal started during Dr M regime. Cannot just blame Badawi. But Badawi will leave a lots more scandals and bailouts for next PM to sort out. Akan datang?

  42. #42 by Toyol on Monday, 3 September 2007 - 4:39 pm

    Chan no confidence in Chua…both MCA!!! Hahahaha…How on earth can they be depended upon to serve the Chinese when they have no confidence amongst themselves.

  43. #43 by JACK THE RIPPER on Tuesday, 4 September 2007 - 9:19 pm

    PKFZ Scandal – The Real BN Power Sharing Concept Exposed

    The RM4.6 billion scandal of the Port Klang Free Zone has exposed the real story of the BN’s power sharing concept.

    At the center of the controversy is Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd., which bought the land from Pulau Lumut Development Cooperative at RM95 million in 1999 and sold of to Port Klang Authority at RM1.1 billion in 2003, in spite of opposition within the government to the deal. The government could have acquired the land under the National Land Code at RM10 per square feet, but instead chose to buy the land at RM23 per square feet. Kuala Dimensi was then appointed as the turnkey contractor for the project, and has reported cost overruns of up to RM3.3 billion.

    Behind the scenes, this scandal, supposedly to emulate the Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (Jafza) in Dubai, reveals the real story of BN’s power sharing concept as national and local UMNO leaders, an SPDP MP as well as a former MCA Parliamentary Secretary are involved at one stage or another of the project. No wonder Jafza, which managed PKFZ decided to withdraw in July 2007, for political interference and bureaucracy.

    Yet again, Prime Minister has lost the opportunity to show political will by agreeing to the request by Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy for a soft-loan of RM4.6 billion for the project. This is tantamount to a bailout. Furthermore, the motion from the Opposition to debate the matter in Parliament as rejected. The two incidents illustrate the mismatch between the supposedly earnest intention of the government to do the right thing and the sorry reality that it can ill-afford the cleansing process that this would entail.

    Will this illustrate confidence to the foreign investors that the government wants to attract in the growth corridors? Worse still, Kuala Dimensi made the exorbitant profits of the land sale at the expense of Pulau Lumut Development Cooperative Berhad, which is a cooperative of local Malay fishermen.

    The statement by former Transport Minister Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik that it was “a good idea” does not in any way whatsoever justify the blatant corruption, cronyism and daylight robbery that appears from this project. Instead of being a mere apologists for the scandal Liong Sik should be asked to explain his initial role and incompetence that led to the fiasco.

    Again, I demand the government to heed our earlier call for an independent commission to investigate and establish who is culpable for this massive scandal.


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