Muhammad Taib must resign as Chairman of all companies and organisations connected to Selangor State Government so as not to make a complete mockery of his resignation as Mentri Besar or reduce his successor as a half-Mentri Besar


Media Conference Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Wednesday): It was reported yesterday that Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib who resigned as Selangor Mentri Besar on Monday does not plan to quit as chairman of several companies and organisations connected to the Selangor State Government.

Muhammad Taib is chairman of Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd, Perbadanan Kemajuan Negeri Selangor, Perbadanan Kemajuan Pertanian Selangor, Yayasan Selangor, Kolej Islam and Institut Pendidikan Selangor (Inspens) by virtue of being Mentri Besar.

The Malay Mail yesterday quoted an aide of Muhammad Taib that the former Mentri Besar would hold on to the posts for an indefinite period.

The aide who declined to be named said: "There is no reason for him to give up the posts. He will continue until further notice."

This is most shocking. Muhammad Taib must resign as Chairman from all companies and organisations connected to the Selangor State Government by virtue of his previous capacity as Mentri Besar, as it would otherwise make a complete mockery of his resignation as Mentri Besar on Monday.

In his press conference announcing his resignation on Monday, when answering a question why he did not take leave pending the outcome of Anti-Corruption Agency investigations and the Brisbane court case if he said he was innocent, Muhammad Taib said:

If these words had come from his heart, then Muhammad Taib should resign as Chairman from all companies and organisations where he had been appointed by virtue of being Selangor Mentri Besar so as no to reduce his successor as a half-Mentri Besar.

In fact, Muhammad Taib should also not cling on to the post of UMNO Vice President and resign from this position as he said he did not want his case to "affect the good name of the party and the Government". If the DAP no-confidence motion had been put to a vote, Muhammad Taib would not be able to secure the support of the majority of the Selangor UMNO Exco and Assembly members

Muhammad Taib knows better than anybody else that he has not only lost the confidence of the UMNO national leadership, but even of the majority of the Selangor UMNO Exco members and Assemblymen.

At the Selangor State Assembly meeting on Monday, for instance, the majority of the total of 30 UMNO Selangor Assembly members were absent. The Sun reported that only 32 out of the 48 Assembly members were present, while Sin Chew Jit Poh reported that only 30 Assembly members were present.

All the 15 non-UMNO Barisan Nasional Assemblymen (11 MCA, three MIC and one Gerakan) were present. The three DAP Assembly members were also present. This meant that out of the 30 UMNO Assembly members, only 14 members were present if we go by The Sun account or only 12 UMNO Assembly members if we go by the Sin Chew Jit Poh account.

This also meant that if Muhammad Taib had not resigned before the Selangor State Assembly meeting on Monday, and the DAP motion of no confidence on Muhammad Taib as Selangor Mentri Besar had been moved by the Selangor Assembly Opposition Leader and DAP Assemblyman for Gukit Gasing, Teng Chang Khim, and put to a vote, Muhammad Taib would not be able to secure the votes of the majority of the total of 30 Selangor UMNO Exco and Assembly members, although all the MCA, MIC and Gerakan Assemblymen would have voted for him!

Muhammad Taib would have won in the Selangor State Assembly in that the DAP motion of no confidence against him would have been defeated, but he would have lost in UMNO politics - as it would be clear to the whole country that he had lost the support of the majority of the Selangor UMNO Exco and Assembly members, who show their loss of confidence in him by finding an excuse to stay away from the State Assembly. Muhammad Taib should clarify what are Brisbane Courier Mail reports which are lies and which are truths

Muhammad Taib said in his press conference on Monday that he had instructed his lawyers to sue Brisbane Courier Mail for its various reports about his various multi-million ringgit properties in Australia.

It is significant that Muhammad Taib’s announcement that he would sue Brisbane Courier-Mail was not contained in his original statement, but in answer to questions by the press.

The Brisbane Courier Mail in its report yesterday said that Muhammad Taib’s Brisbane lawyer, Michael Lew "refused to comment on the legal threat" to sue The Courier-Mail for exposing his land dealings.

Muhammad Taib should publicly clarify what are the Brisbane Courier-Mail reports about his Australian properties which are lies and which are truths.

Muhammad Taib should realise that it is quite easy to check on the ownership of Australian properties, as the various Australian states maintain a Real Estate databank, and it is not difficult to verify whether the two properties referred to by Brisbane Courier-Mail had been bought in the name of Muhammad Taib’s wife, Asbi Rohani Adnan - as this databank is available to all Real Estate companies in Australia for a monthly fee.

(16/4/97)


*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong