As there is a clear and present conflict-of-interest, Azmi should belatedly stand down and disqualify himself from conducting the PAC inquiry into the RM12.5 billion PKFZ scandal

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will be guilty of gross incompetence if it should come to the conclusion that the RM12.5 billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal is all due to the project being “managed by a group of incompetent people from day one” and nothing more.

This appears to be the present line of thinking of the PAC Chairman Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid who told the media after the PAC meeting on Wednesday, which was attended by former Transport Minister Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy with his retinue of a lawyer and two aides, that “In general, the huge project was managed by a very incompetent group of people” from day one.

Could the ballooning of the PKFZ scandal from RM1.088 billion in 2002 when Tun Dr. Ling Liong Sik was Transport Minister,quadrupling to RM4.63 billion in 2006 under Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy as Transport Minister, and now set to mushroom to become a RM12.5 billion scandal under Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat as Transport Minister all because of management by “a very incompetent group of people” from day one?

Was there no heinous criminality in cheating, criminal breach of trust, misappropriation of public funds resulting in the RM12.5 billion PKFZ “mother of all scandals”, five times bigger than the biggest financial scandal which kicked off the 22-year premiership of Tun Dr. Mahathir – the RM2.5 billion Bumiputra Malaysia Finance (BMF) scandal 25 years ago?

Is this the nation’s most “heinous crime without criminals” in 52 years since Merdeka?

Azmi said Chan had appeared before the PAC armed with legal views from local and Commonwealth legal experts.

I stand corrected but I understand that the opinion of a Queen’s Counsel from UK in support of Chan’s position was not tabled at the PAC meeting, in which case, how could it be appended as an official document to the PAC report on the PKFZ inquiry when the PAC report is submitted to Parliament?

What about the opinions of all the other local and Commonwealth legal experts? Have they been tabled officially at the PAC meeting so that they could be included as an appendix to the PAC report for study by MPs?

Azmi said the battery of local and Commonwealth legal experts had given opinions that Chan’s three Letters of Support to PKFZ turnkey developer Kuala Dimensi Sdn. Bhd (KDSB) to raise some RM4 billion of bonds were not government guarantees but mere support letters for the project.

Will the PAC seek opinion from a Queen’s Counsel from UK that Chan’s Letters of Support were in fact implicit government guarantees and which were so regarded by the bond market?

Azmi said that although the two former Transport Ministers, Kong Choy and Liong Sik who had appeared before the PAC, had denied that the four Letters of Support they issued were government guarantees, these were only the opinions of both of them.

The PAC is calling the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Gani Patail to give his opinions on the two Ministers’ four Letters of Support at the next PAC hearing on August 12.

The PAC inquiry into the PKFZ scandal is taking on the character of a farce as Azmi as a Cabinet Minister in 2007 was not only privy but accepted the Attorney-General’s opinion that the four Letters of Support were implicit government guarantees for the RM4 billion bonds raised by KDSB in the bond market for PKFZ project, and Azmi was also party to the Cabinet’s subsequent decision to retrospectively approve the unlawful issue of the four Letters of Support by Liong Sik and Kong Choy and the subsequent Cabinet decision on a RM4.6 billion bail-out of PKFZ.

Azmi should vacate from the chair of PAC Chairman to testify at the PAC hearing why he and other Cabinet Ministers agreed with the Attorney-General’s opinion in 2007 that the four Letters of Support were implicit government guarantees for which the Cabinet had to give retrospective approval.

Other Cabinet Ministers in the 2007 decision for the RM4.6 bail-out of the PKFZ project should also be summoned to appear before the PAC inquiry to explain their support for the RM4.6 billion bailout of PKFZ.

There is a clear and present conflict-of-interest on Azmi’s role as PAC Chairman and former Minister when the Cabinet decided in 2007 on the RM4.6 billion PKFZ bailout – which was why I had earlier suggested he should disqualify himself from conducting the PAC inquiry into the PKFZ scandal, allowing the PAC Deputy Chairman Dr. Tan Seng Giaw to take over the inquiry.

Although late, it is still the proper thing for Azmi to do as it is never too late for him to stand down and disqualify himself from chairing the rest of the PAC inquiry into the PKFZ scandal.

  1. #1 by SENGLANG on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 11:55 am

    Guaranteed ? Or Support?

    But one thing it was very clear that the bond holders have placed a lot of weigh on this letter what ever you want to term it. In this case guaranteed sound a bit sinful so they use another word instead, but the intention is the same, ie MOT provide support to the issuers of bonds. and the bond issuers also take comfort and have a good ratings out of it.

    If MOT has nothing to do with the bond issues then MOT should not provide anything. MOT is evil but it was clear it was party to the scheme.

  2. #2 by SpeakUp on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 12:06 pm

    Letters of comfort can bring about contractual obligations. Anyways, they will say incompetent because cannot be sued. Nice cover up as usual …

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 12:09 pm

    Lets step back a bit and ask. Do something still smells really bad about this thing?

    Why is it Najib has NOT spoken a word on this issue when the former Treasurer of UMNO itself is involved BUT so many of the UMNO zealots like Bung Mokhtar and Tengku Adnan has been going ballistic. IF this thing is all an MCA thing, why OTK, pretty much a new senior Minister, has so much protection FROM the old guards and zealots he has a passing relationship with?

    If you ask me, as much as know how scandalous this thing is, it smells like it runs much deeper very much deeper full of the worst smelling crap that will shock the EVERYONE…

  4. #4 by frankyapp on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 12:46 pm

    I have said dozens of time ,the people would not get any truth and fair justice in any complaints or in any legal trials against the Umno/Bn leaders or government.It looks likely,this Rm 12.5 billion PKFZ scandal will ended up high and dry for the people. The PAC Chairman,the MACC director,the PDRM IGP, the JD CJ ,the AG and the Chairman EC are all good example of tools used by the regime in power.The current regime is dangerous,vicious,evil,bad and are using various tools to trap,arrest and kill whoever dares to run counter with them. They have created dozens of blocks,barriers and strong walls to protect themselves and are now warning the people that they are untouchable .They will eliminate any one who tries to touch them or any of their gang members.These people are the Umnoputras and the mighty warlords. I have several time in this blog warned PR leaders/politicians/members/supporters to be pretty careful when dealing with these so called untouchables as these bad guys would do anything it takes to wipe out anyone (TBH was an example) who tries or obstructs their path to control and to destroy this country,our country Malaysia.

  5. #5 by jbozz on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 12:56 pm

    In Malaysia why this has to happen if you call for 1Malaysia

    Najis said that for first 30 days from Aug 5, 50 percent of the ASM units would be allocated to Bumiputras. The Chinese would get 30 percent, the Indians 15 percent and others 5 percent.

    A country where non bumiputra have to share the other half with the Indians, and other.

  6. #6 by SpeakUp on Friday, 31 July 2009 - 1:55 pm

    jbozz … read ANIMAL FARM … that is your answer.

  7. #7 by House Victim on Saturday, 1 August 2009 - 1:54 pm

    Has PAC got any answer or verification of points from the PWC Reports during the Inquiries?
    Shouldn’t the Report be the competent one to be based for the Inquiry. Or, should one concluded that PKA or MOT is incompetent again to engage PWC – a World Class Auditing Firm for a non-competent Report?

    That Report had already mentioned a lot on the Incompetent of PKA. But, what about the Misappropriations of the Approval, the Soft Loan? It has revealed by the wordings of the three letters that they are not Guarantee Letters! Therefore, any liability from those letters should be on those who had issued the letters and not the Government! The Misappropriation of Power in allowing the Project to expand without proper approval from the Parliament should be investigated. Is PAC the one by Law to do it?

    PAC is trying to prove they THEMSELVES are NOT COMPETENT!!

    As mentioned before, PAC does not have the jurisdiction on the matter as PAC should be for those being Approved by the Parliament and not for Mis-appropriation without the Approval of the Parliament as in this case. An Independent and Competent Committee should be set up to investigate Misappropriations of Power without the proper and necessary procedures. The end result is those misappropriation should be personally responsible by those who had mishandled!!

  8. #8 by shortie kiasu on Saturday, 1 August 2009 - 6:42 pm

    PAC is just another toothless tiger put up for show like in a ‘circus’.

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