What disciplinary action would be taken against Liong Sik as hands-off Minister in showing utter indifference to the 73 road deaths in six days of "Ops Statik IV"?

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya,  Wednesday): Last Friday, Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi revealed that at the first meeting of the new Cabinet  on December 15, the Prime Minister directed Cabinet Ministers to carry out their duties with collective responsibility, loyalty, efficiency and dedication.

He said the directive was among 13 aspects of responsibility and 14 points issued by Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad to all Ministers.

Abdullah said Mahathir told the Ministers that they should be "hands-on" in their work.

But in less than a fortnight, we already have many Ministers who have shown that they are not "hands-on" but "hands-off" Ministers.

The Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik is the worst "hands-off" Minister, who has shown utter indifference to the 73 road deaths in six days of "Ops Statik IV", although he should be the Cabinet Minister who should be most concerned about the mayhem on our roads.

Liong Sik does not seem alarmed  or anyway concerned at  the daily death toll since the  launch of Ops Statik IV   last Thursday (eight), Friday (12), Saturday (10), Sunday (21), Monday (15) and Tuesday (seven).

Nobody wants to start calling on a Minister to resign after just being  sworn in after the general election on Nov. 29, but in the interests of the people and nation, the Prime Minister should remove Liong Sik from the Transport Ministry and put in someone  with a fresh mind, greater imagination  and more commitment to his Ministerial responsibilities.

Liong Sik is the classic example of what I have in mind when I expressed my disappointment at the new Cabinet formed after the general election, prompting me to call it a Jurassic Cabinet.

Abdullah said Mahathir had reminded  the Cabinet Ministers of their collective responsibility on whatever matter decided by the Cabinet.

The Cabinet had previously decided that Cabinet Ministers should not go overseas for their annual leave.  Will this directive be observed by all Ministers who have made plans for the New Year holidays - will they all be having holidays inside the country rather than outside?

Can Abdullah answer this query?


*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman