Guan Eng: PM must halt Lynas plant construction

By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal
The Malaysian Insider
Mar 23, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, March 23 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak should immediately halt the construction of the Lynas refinery in Gebeng to prove his commitment to public safety, Lim Guan Eng said today.

Penang Chief Minister Lim accused the prime minister of contradicting himself during an interview with radio station 988FM yesterday, where Najib had said he would scrap the Lynas plant construction if there was scientific evidence to prove it was hazardous.

This, according to Lim, was different from what Najib had said last week — that the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) on the Lynas rare earths plant could not decide on whether the refinery would be built.

“Datuk Seri Najib Razak should publicly withdraw his March 17 remarks, order an immediate stop-work order on Lynas and declare the Barisan Nasional’s government willingness to pay compensation of at least RM700 million which Lynas spent on building the plant,” Lim said in a statement.

Putrajaya announced that it would set up the PSC on the Lynas plant in Kuantan, which has stoked fears of radiation pollution.

The committee was approved in the Dewan Rakyat this week amid opposition furore over the alleged lack of terms of reference and suspicion that the nine-man panel would be used to “whitewash” the issue.

PR lawmakers also questioned the point of the select committee given that Najib had already said the government will not be bound by the panel’s findings.

They subsequently announced a boycott of the panel, saying it has no power to decide the fate of the RM2.3 billion project.

“For Datuk Seri Najib to change his tune to say that the PSC was a ‘strong basis for us to make a decision’ on Lynas is a flip-flop from his March 17 remarks.

“Clearly this change is the result of PR’s boycott of the PSC. However such a flip-flop only raises more questions whether the prime minister is serious and sincere about following through on closing down Lynas in the face of evidence and proof of environmental damage and threats to public health and safety,” Lim added.

The decision to set up the panel came after months of fierce opposition to the project from PR, civil society groups and the public.

Thousands of anti-Lynas protestors attended an opposition-backed rally by Himpunan Hijau last month in the largest protest yet against the refinery, which is expected to fire up later this year.

Critics allege that Lynas Corp has failed to give enough assurances on how it will handle the low-level radioactive waste that will be produced at the plant, 25km from Kuantan city centre.

But the Australian miner maintains that waste from the Gebeng plant will not be hazardous and can be easily recycled for commercial applications.

  1. #1 by yhsiew on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 5:31 pm

    Money is taken, there is no U-turn!

  2. #2 by dagen wanna "ABU" on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 6:19 pm

    The only government in the world who plays the role of the opposition vis-a-vis the people.

    And yes money taken, indeed I believe that is so. And no u-turn because the giver must have threatened the taker to expose the whole issue if project is ever halted. Umno cannot afford such exposure – not so near election time. The lembu exposure already caused a delay and GE13 cannot be delayed any longer.

  3. #3 by Winston on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 6:51 pm

    If there’s any compensation to be paid to Lynas, it must be from the pockets of those who approved the project prior to working out its safety aspects.
    It looks like approval was given regardless of any detrimental effects from the factory.
    It also looks like the government is prepared to ram the project down the throats of Malaysians!
    Their policy is: We are the government and we can do whatever we like!
    Make sure we all go all out to kick them out and then hear what song they are going to sing!!!

  4. #4 by eh on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 7:17 pm

    Agreed kick them out…

  5. #5 by SENGLANG on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 7:38 pm

    Our PM has been cornered, he will just talk to suit the occasion and please what the people want to hear. He has lost in his battle before the war.

    As to Lynas it is definitely here to stay no doubt about that. Millions has been spent and those Lynas fellow are not stupid to investment such sum without sufficient confidence and assurance from the authority.

    The uneasy of the Pahang MB when question on the Lynas show that he has committed to Lynas and he was caught in a dilemma, they have no way out and they will pay politically and the tax payers will bear it financially in the event the project is terminated. Hugh compensation is expected if the project is to be terminated.

    Lynas project has been handled in a typical BN way of doing thing. Approve the project and justify it later. The tax payers are the losers.

  6. #6 by tak tahan on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 7:55 pm

    But the Australian miner maintains that waste from the Gebeng plant will not be hazardous and can be easily recycled for commercial vanity application products ie face powders,lipsticks,perfumes,cow’s eyelashs ect for Rosmah Mansor with free of charge.

  7. #7 by Godfather on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 8:43 pm

    Aiya, you people very good at kacau only. The RM 2 billion worth of contracts have been promised to UMNO, so how to cari makan now ?

  8. #8 by Godfather on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 8:45 pm

    Not only do we have to compensate Lynas, now we have to compensate the various Malaysian companies that were promised the various supply contracts.

  9. #9 by cseng on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 10:38 pm

    //Najib would scrap the Lynas plant construction if there was scientific evidence to prove it was hazardous.//

    By who, what and how?

    We got AELB, the director always used words ‘but, ‘then’, ‘again’, which talk a lot, but you don’t get his points.

    Then, you have this Ongkili fella, he took out his ‘batang’ and say Parliment is higher radiactive than anypart of M’sia

    We also, got a chemist who pull a sperm from Saifull’s arss after few days, disect it, profile the DNA to single match to individual X.

    Now you got the PSC, Najib want scientific proof, these MPs are expert of everything, scientist included.

    Are you ready to trust any one of them?

  10. #10 by cseng on Friday, 23 March 2012 - 10:45 pm

    BN has made Lynas ours problem, So, how to kill a Lynas-our? you can’t!

    You have to vote out our big dinasour, or change your lifestyle, live with Lynasour.

    Kill this dinasour! that Lynasour die naturally…

  11. #11 by boh-liao on Saturday, 24 March 2012 - 5:34 am

    Actually a VERY SIMPLE solution lah 4 rakyat (d REAL BOSS) – TERMINATE d servis of our lousy incompetent corrupt SERVANTs, UmnoB/BN cheats n plunderers; VOTE 4 PR

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