Abdullah should repudiate and reprimand Samy Vellu for his threat to stop
MRR2 repairs prolonging its three-month closure if ACA conducts
investigations – and even suspend Samy Vellu as Cabinet Minister
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Friday): The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi should repudiate and reprimand the Works Minister, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu for his threat to stop repair work on the flyover along the Middle Ring Road Two (MRR2) in Kepong and prolong its three-month closure if the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) conducts investigations into the MRR2 project.
Malaysians are most outraged by Samy Vellu’s threat to impose even greater hardships and inconvenience on the tens of thousands of commuters who have to use the flyover every day if the ACA initiates investigations into any wrongdoing in the MRR2 project, whether award of contract, design, construction or supervision by the Public Works Department and Works Ministry.
This is one email I received today:
“He (Samy Vellu) threatened that if ACA were to probe the MRR2 project as reported in the star newspaper, all repair work will stop and inconvenience the road users. What utter nonsense. This statement is childish and also very high-handed. A person of this position should be more responsible and should think before speaking.
“I don't see how an investigation can affect repair work of the MRR2. This is not a burglary or homicide where the evidence are not to be disturbed until police has finished the work on the crime scene.
“This is not a professional attitude and something need to be done.”
Abdullah should direct Samy Vellu to retract and apologise for his threat to stop MRR2 repairs to prolong the sufferings of commuters if ACA initiates investigations, failing which, the Prime Minister should suspend Samy Vellu as Works Minister for openly going against his 2004 general election pledge to head a clean, incorruptible, accountable, transparent, efficient and people-oriented administration. A new Works Minister should be appointed who is prepared to tell the people the full facts about the MRR2 flyover scandal and who will not threaten to stop MRR2 repairs work if ACA conduct investigations into the MRR2 project.
The way Samy Vellu had handled various questions about the MRR2 flyover closure within two years of its completion is most controversial, to say the least.
Firstly, why was he so fast and categorical in dismissing suggestions of design failure as having caused the columns of the elevated highway stretch between Kepong and Selayang to crack. If he has expert findings to back up his stand, why hasn’t he made public these expert reports?
Secondly, why is Samy so protective of the contractors when he said after the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday that the contractor might not be able to afford the RM20 million repairs – when on Monday, he had said that the contractor, Bumi Highway, “had been told to repair the damage in three months and bear the costs”. (New Straits Times p3)
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC), which is meeting in Parliament tomorrow, should take a decision to conduct a thorough-going audit of the MRR2 project, in particular the award of the contract, the project design, the construction and the quality of supervision by the PWD and Works Ministry, to pinpoint the root causes as to why the MRR2 flyover in Kepong could become a threat to public safety in less than two years of its completion requiring it to be closed and the lessons to be learnt for the future.
* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader,
Member of Parliament for Ipoh Timor & DAP National Chairman