The Balakong Toll Plaza should be dismantled as there is already a toll
plaza at Hulu Langat 9 ms and there should not be more than
one toll plaza for the Cheras-Kajang Highway
Media Conference Statement
- Fifth Nation-wide Toll Plazas Protests at Balakong Toll Plaza, Cheras
by Lim Kit Siang
(Kuala Lumpur, Sunday): The fifth
nation-wide toll plazas protests is being held on the eve of the Anti-Toll
Protest Public Meeting organised by the Coalition Against Toll at
the Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall tomorrow night.
Representatives from various political parties and NGOs will speak
at the anti-toll protest public meeting, including Dr. Chandra Muzaffar
and Irene Fernandez.
The Coalition Against Toll had originally intended to hold a Mammoth
Anti-Toll Protest Public Rally at Bukit Jalil Stadium on Friday, February
26 and RM2,500 deposit had already been paid and acknowledged, and we had
expected 30,000 to 40,000 people from all over the country to gather at
the rally to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Works Minister,
Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu and the Cabinet public protest against unfair
highway privatisation, unfair highway tolls and unfair highway toll rate
There was a conspiracy however among the instruments of government to
frustrate the holding of the mammoth anti-toll protest public rally, and
the Bukit Jalil Stadium authorities returned the RM2,500 cheque on the
ground that the stadium would not be available as it would be under renovation.
We have however caught the Bukit Jalil stadium authorities red-handed
in a most dishonest ploy, as the DAP MP for Cheras, Tan Kok Wai, had made
a surprise check on the Bukit Jalil Stadium on Friday, and found that there
had been no renovation work whatsoever.
Malaysians are very disappointed that the Cabinet had disregarded
their views and demands and approved another round of toll rate increases
for four expressways effective from tomorrow, and cannot accept these toll
rate increases for four reasons:
We are gathered at the Balakong Toll Plaza because we want to demand the
dismantling of this toll plaza. The Balakong Toll Plaza should be dismantled
as there is already a toll plaza at Hulu Langat 9 ms and there should
not be more than one toll plaza for the Cheras-Kajang Highway so as not
to impose unncessary hardships on the motorists as well as the people in
Imposing an unacceptable burden on the people at a time of economic hardships
with still no light at the end of the tunnel as far as economic recovery
Disregarding the voice of the people against another round of highway toll
rate increases until there is a comprehensive review of the highway
privatisation programme and highway tolls by a Highways Consultative Council
as demanded by Malaysians in the past few weeks throughout
the country, especially at the Sunday nation-wide toll plazas protests.
The Cabinet approval of another RM200 million to four expressway concession
companies this year is against the "user pays" principle of highway
privatisation and extends the injustice of the unfair highway tolls to
non-motorists and non-users of the expressways, such as farmers and
fishermen in other states.
Continued lack of accountability and transparency with regard to the
highway privatisation contracts which make it impossible for political
parties, NGOs and the Malaysian public to evaluate the propriety, legitimacy
or even the fairness of the tolls or toll rate increases or compensations
paid to the toll-road companies from public funds.
*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary
Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member
of Parliament for Tanjong