RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout scandal – let Abdullah justify it in the 2008 Budget tomorrow

When presenting the 2008 budget tomorrow, the Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi should explain the full case for the government bailout of the RM4.6 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal to set an example of government accountability and financial integrity to all Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries.

This is because for the past two days, both the Deputy Finance Minister, Datuk Dr. Awang Adek bin Husin and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Finance Ministry, Datuk Seri Dr. Helmi bin Yahaya had been misleading Parliament and the nation about the true nature and character of the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout scandal.

In the 2007 supplementary estimates, the Finance Ministry asked for RM260 million for Port Klang Authority without giving any explanation as to its true purpose.

It was from my exchange with Helmi during the winding-up of the debate at the committee stage yesterday that it emerged that the RM260 million sum was the first amount of the RM4.6 billion government bailout for PKFZ, as beginning this year, the first annual payment of RM520 million for the RM4.6 billion bailout for the bonds raised by Kuala Dimensi Sdn Bhd — the PKFZ turkey contractor – has to be made.

It was also only after I had made persistent demand, declaring that this was information that Parliament and Malaysian taxpayers have right to access, that Helmi read out the schedule of repayments in the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout, viz:

2007 – RM510 million
2008 – RM660 million
2009 – RM660 million
2010 – RM772 million
2011 – RM487 million
2012 – RM733 million
2013 – RM170 million
2014 – RM170 million
2015 – RM170 million
2016 – RM170 million
2017 – RM179 million
Total – RM4,681 million

However, Helmi like Awang Adek in Parliament on Tuesday suffered from the denial syndrome and denied that this was a RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout by the government. Both also refused to answer specific questions which I posed to them.

For instance, I had asked Helmi why the development costs for PKFZ had ballooned from the original RM400 million to RM2.8 billion. Furthermore, whether the escalation of the PKFZ development costs was unlawful as it had not complied with the requirement that there should be Cabinet approval for any increase in development costs which exceeded RM100 million.

In the case of Awang Adek, he avoided the specific questions which I had raised during his winding-up during the policy debate on the Supplementary Estimates on Tuesday, such as:

  • Why the land purchase price for the 1,000 acres for the PKFZ had ballooned about 19 times from RM95 million bought by Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd. in 1999 to RM1.8 billion, the price Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd sold to Port Klang Authority for the PKFZ project;
  • Why the Cabinet rejected the recommendation of the Attorney-General’s Chambers and the Treasury that the 1,000 acres earmarked by PKFZ should be acquired by Land Acquisition Act at RM10 per square ft but instead submitted to the pressure of the Selangor State Government to purchase it at RM25 psf.
  • Why the former Transport Minister Dr. Ling Liong Sik and the current Transport Minister Chan Kong Choy had abused their powers in unlawfully giving “Letters of Support” to Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd to raise RM4 billion bonds, which have now to be borne by the government in the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout.

It is no surprise that the Public Accounts Committee which met this morning is not satisfied with the explanation given by Port Klang Authority over the PKFZ bailout scandal — as the true facts are clearly even more shocking and outrageous than what had been admitted by both Awang and Helmi.

This is why the time has come for an end to all the pretences and parliamentary farce of denial over the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout scandal.

As Finance Minister, Abdullah must come to Parliament when presenting the 2008 Budget tomorrow to give a full accounting as to why he has broken his pledge when he became Prime Minister 46 months ago that there would be no bailout of mega-billion-ringgit “white elephant” projects which end up in benefiting Barisan Nasional cronies at public expense — by giving his approval for the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout.

He cannot just pass the buck to the Deputy Finance Minister or the Parliamentary Secretary to the Finance Ministry who are forced to pretend in Parliament that there is no RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout — when everyone in the country and the world can see the advent of the first and biggest financial scandal and bailout to start the administration of any Prime Minister in 50 years of Malaysian history.

Lets call a spade a spade. Let Abdullah admit as Prime Minister and Finance Minister that his administration has embarked on a RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout and explain the justification for such a bailout.

  1. #1 by dawsheng on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 5:18 pm

    Lets call a thieve a thieve. There is no way to justify such a blatant abused of power by corrupted govt officials and their cronies. Abdullah no need to admit it, it is clear PKFZ’s RM4.6 billion scandal is not a bail out but to cover a very big hole of lies and cheats.

  2. #2 by xaviers on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 5:21 pm

    Truth is .. all of us know the outcome.

    This subject will be sidelined..as usual.

  3. #3 by smeagroo on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 6:33 pm

    Haha u expect a HP6 fella in FInance Minsiter position to explain something so complex? Maybe debit credit tahu la. BUt mostly he knows only credit. KACHING!!

  4. #4 by badak on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 6:49 pm

    Tomorrow,s budget will be an election budget ,do you think the PM is going to touch on this out right scandle ,Let,s get real tomorrows budget will be full of goodies, There will be the the lowering of oil prices and lowering of passport fees.

    Yeah sin tax will go up not as much as we all expect.lets enjoy this budget,Because after the election,prices will go up again….

  5. #5 by shortie kiasu on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 7:26 pm

    The BN government is still a long, long way from understanding what is good governance, transparency, responsible to the electorate, accountability.

  6. #6 by boh-liao on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 8:03 pm

    What’s the worry? Absolutely no problem lah for the BN government. Tomorrow it will be distributing some sweets to all groups of people and it jolly well knows that all monkey business will be forgotten by most voters, who will vote BN candidates back to power again for 5 more glorious years.

  7. #7 by citizen on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 9:04 pm

    wait… how does it work? the government lends our money to these blood suckers and they have to charge the government interests? I thought it is the other way round.

    when the sucker sold the land for 25ringgit /ft2, they already making huge profit. why add the interest some more?

    Normally, when a developer come out with their own money first to develop something, when handover to the gov, the gov have to pay some interests. But, in this case, its not, the government starts paying (so called soft loan) them with interests included from year one to develop the land, the suckers don’t have to come out with a single cent to develop it.

    Well, while this land is hell for others, it is a heaven for the well connected.

  8. #8 by bystander on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 9:05 pm

    Tun Ling is a man without honour and principle. He ran away from PKFZ fiasco. He resigned just before Transmile AGM. A man of honour would have been accountable and answerable face up to the shareholders at the AGM. Should take the rap for the financial fiasco and then resign. He is a person in cantonese known as “yau ling yau law yau seek”

  9. #9 by hotsync on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 9:54 pm

    I read Rm4.6m is the largest amount in Malaysia History to bail-out a company…another entry for Malaysia Book of Records!!! maybe after the most traveled PM, most number of “I Dont’ know” responses etc etc…

  10. #10 by hotsync on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 9:55 pm

    Sorry rather RM4.6billion….

  11. #11 by lhteoh on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 10:01 pm

    LKS has to perform his duty as opposition leader to table issues that of public interest, unfortunately whatever he says no one in BN will support even if it is RM46 billion scandal. I think if opposition mis-managed RM4.60 those stupid idiot will make noise. The kind of leaders we have today, what will happen to Malaysia in the next 10, 15 or 20 years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Do you think we can celebrate next 50 years of Mederka!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. #12 by badak on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 11:29 pm


  13. #13 by sheriff singh on Thursday, 6 September 2007 - 11:35 pm

    Will the Budget be unbalanced By RM 4.6 billion or perhaps even more?

    Look out for creative accounting and alot of bullshit.

    And we are all supposed to “feel good”.

    Samy Vellu will say : “brilliant, the boss is brilliant. Smack, smack, smack!”

    Ong Ka Ting : “….caring budget, the Chinese must vote for him no matter how much we get screwed.”

    Koh Tsu Koon: “…have people’s interest at heart. I just love this guy.”

    Nazri : “.. the Opposition has no to answer to this. No need to debate. No need for any opposition.”

    Rais : “Whats RM 100 million compared to RM 150 billion? It was a good show, what?”

    One-Eyed Jack : “Tak bocor! Tak Bocor!! Tak Bocor. Saya tak nampak.”

    Kinabatangan : “I second and third that. Maybe I’ll have a fourth as well”.

    Nor Mohammed Yakcop: “We will finance it all by “soft loans”. Its only a loan. Honest. They can try their best to pay back”.

    Najib : “All Tan Too, Yah.”

    Hishamuddin : “I raise my keris to that”.

    Samy Vellu (again) : “brilliant, the boss is brilliant. Smack, smack, smack!”

  14. #14 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 5:49 am

    Pak Lah is a dictator in ‘free market’ clothes. He is the CEO of a dictatorial Executive seeking to do whatever it wishes for its croniies with scant regard for the nation’s weal.

    BN must pay for its uncontrolled abuses.

  15. #15 by hotsync on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 8:52 am

    Transport minister annouced resignation (radio broadcast this morning) due to health reason and personal matter. Even Ong Ka Ting were not informed.

  16. #16 by ktteokt on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 9:01 am

    It is absurd for a person to hold so many ministerial posts in the government. If that is the case, abolish parliament and have one single person run the nation then. Abdullah wants to be the Prime Minister, he also wants to hold the post of Home Minister and now he is also the Minister of Finance. Just how many heads do you think he has?

    Lets abolish the whole government system and dissolve parliament to set up “KEMENTERIAN SERBAGUNA” with Abdullah as Menteri Serbaguna!!

  17. #17 by boh-liao on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 9:26 am

    What TDM and AAB demonstrated to the world is that it is not difficult at all to run a nation like Malaysia and to keep all citizens happy – a guy can hold three top cabinet posts, senang and buta gaji.

  18. #18 by anakbaram on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 9:55 am

    With all these going on, I have no doubt that the situation is an emergency one.

    This is a real EMERGENCY!!!!! Not the type which is normally used to silenced a political opponent or a group of vocally inclined honest citizens. Metaphorically speaking, our house is burning and it is critical that a drastic action is taken otherwise we will either die or suffer a catastrophe or a disastrous consequence.

    Go for it. Ask them to bring it out and let the people know. Let the people know that they have been lotted.

  19. #19 by chloo on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 9:58 am

    The plan would be to drag the case, have some go on MC, have some go on leave becos their cat gave birth and all will be forgotten……. best example would be to look at the All Tan Too Yah case…… might as well C4 PKFZ to eliminate all evidence that place ever existed. Our special units from PDRM should be up to the task.

  20. #20 by AntiRacialDiscrimination on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 1:06 pm

    I think the PM will say “I don’t know” again.

    Even if he does say something, that would still be meaningless. He said he wanted to fight corruption, he said he wanted to be fair to all races, he said he wanted to be fair to all religion, he said …………………zzzzzzzzzzz

  21. #21 by Justicewanted on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 1:41 pm

    The PM not only say “I do not know”

    Another famous thing is http://www.malaysia-today.net/blog2006/index.php?itemid=7905

  22. #22 by AhPek on Friday, 7 September 2007 - 11:13 pm

    When Rome is burning, Nero the Emperor is strumming his banjo into the night.
    When Malaysia is burdened by scandal after scandal,Bodohwe is jetting in and out of Malaysia twice a month!!
    So what’s so difficult running a nation!! No probvlem what.Just form a committee and ask them to submit a report and if the report does not meet consensus form another committee to study the report given by the first committee and keep doing that ad infinitim until everything is forgotten.This is Bodohwe’s modus operandi and who says it is difficult to hold 3 posts,go overseas twice a month and sleep all the time!

  23. #23 by rookie on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 4:48 am

    2007 – RM510 million
    2008 – RM660 million
    2009 – RM660 million
    2010 – RM772 million
    2011 – RM487 million
    2012 – RM733 million
    2013 – RM170 million
    2014 – RM170 million
    2015 – RM170 million
    2016 – RM170 million
    2017 – RM179 million
    Total – RM4,681 million

    Wonder how they came up with the year by year figures? Pluck from the air maybe?

  24. #24 by ihavesomethingtosay on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 1:20 pm

    why is PKFZ given such a soft repayment period when the malaysian public still has to pay expensive toll year after year?

    why this special preferences for these non performing companies?


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