By Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Kota Melaka, Lim Kit Siang, on Wednesday, 28.11.1984 in Petaling Jaya
Call on Daim Zairuddin and Anwar Ibrahim to explain the delay in the release of the second report of the BMF inquiry committee
The UMNO Youth Leader, Anwar Ibrahim, has reiterated yesterday that the release of the second report of the Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Committee recommending action should be taken against former BMF and Bank Bumiputra executives for the BMF loans scandal should not be delayed.
Anwar Ibrahim should realise that as Minister of Agriculture, he must bear collective responsibility for the suppression of the second report of the BMF Inquiry Committee, and it will just not do for him to give the public the impression that he has nothing to do with the suppression of the report.
Similarly, it is inadequate for the finance Minister, Daim Zainuddin, to claim on Nov 19 that he would advise the Cabinet to make public the Ahmad Nordin Committee’s second report.
As the BMF loans scandal, involving BMF and Bank Bumiputra, comes directly under the purview of the Finance Minister, his views, voice and advice must prevail in the Cabinet, unless there are more powerful figures than the Finance Minister in the Cabinet who do not want the second report to be published.
There could only be two persons who are more powerful than the Finance Minister in the Cabinet on matters which come directly under the purview of the Finance Ministry-the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister.
Is the Malaysian public to think that although the Finance Minister wants the second Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Report to be made public, he is being vetoed by either the Prime Minister or Deputy Prime Minister?
Furthermore, in a matter which directly affects his Finance Ministry, an such an important matter as the BMF loans scandal which has rocked Malaysia and seriously tarnished Malaysia’s financial standing locally as well as internationally, if the Finance Minister’s advice is rejected by Cabinet, it would show a shocking lack of confidence in the new Finance Minister. In other countries, this would have led to the resignation of the Finance Minister from the Cabinet.
I do not know what is the real scenario in the Cabinet as far as the question of the publication of the second Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Committee Report is concerned, but both Daim Zainuddin and Anwar Ibrahim owe the people of Malaysia a satisfactory explaination why the report is still suppressed.
Anwar Ibrahim has also clarified that UMNO Youth will only press for the setting up of a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the BMF loans scandal if all other ways to bring those responsible to book failed.
For over two years, the authorities have been trying to ‘cover up’ the BMF loans scandal, until events happened outside the control of the Malaysian government when the entire BMF scandal was exposed in Hong Kong after the murder of BMF Assistant General Manager, Jalil Ibrahim. There was no attempt then to bring anyone to book. After even now, after more than two years, not a single person had yet been brought to book!
Is the UMNO Youth satisfied with this manner of handling the biggest financial and banking scandal in Malaysian history, making a complete mockery of the government’s slogan of a ‘clean, efficient and trustworthy’ administration? It would appear that the UMNO Youth’s demands for the highest integrity in public service is becoming less stringer from the days when Anwar was first elected UMNO Youth Leader.
HOPE that Tan Koon Swan will go not abroad very much earlier to escape having to explain why he could not spare three hours in three months to debate the Bukit China issue
Several Tan Koon Swan MCA faction branches have issued statements attacking me, and I am sure very many more are planning to do the same, on the question of the Bukit China public debate between Tan Koon Swan and me.
It would appear that Tan Koon Swan, not daring to fully accept my challenge to a public debate issued on Nov 7. That the Tan Koon Swan faction has betrayed the historic, religious, cultural and political rights and interests of the Malaysian Chinese over Bukit China issue for individual and group interests’ has issued instruction to all branches in his faction to issue statements attacking me to confuse the situation and distract public attention.
I am myself ignoring, and I am telling all DAP leaders and branches to ignore, these pointless statements and attacks by the Tan Koon Swan MCA faction branches, I would advise Tan Koon Swan not to bring in extraneous issues, or third parties, and if he dares to have a public debate with me on the subject I set out on Nov 7 by before Dec 16.
I hope that Tan Koon Swan will not leave the country earlier than he had schedule to escape having to explain why he could not spare three hours in three months to hold the Bukit China public debate.
I have asked Sdr. Chan Kok Kit, DAP MP for Sungei Besi, to represent me to finalise the details of the Bukit China public debate with Tan Koon Swan, and Chan Kok Kit has reported to me that although he tried to contact Tan Koon Swan half a dozen times, he had not been successful. It would appear that Tan Koon Swan is also hiding from Chan Kok Kit.
If Tan Koon Swan still claims that he would not be able to devote three hours in a period of three months to have the Bukit China public debate, then:
Let him state clearly on which date in February or March 1985 he is prepared to have the public debate on ‘That the Tan Koon Swan faction has betrayed the historic, religious, cultural and political rights and interests of the Malaysian Chinese over Bukit China issue for individual and group interests; and
Release his daily appointments from Nov 7 to the date he is prepared to have a public debate to convince the Malaysian public that he was indeed too busy on ‘personal and official’ business, which are more important than Bukit China issue, to have the debate; and
I hope Tan Koon Swan would have the courage to respond to these two questions, positively, and not again indulge in his new art of evasions or ‘Playing the Tai Chi’!
Finally, I want Tan Koon Swan to declare clearly and firmly that whatever the development of the next few months, with regard to the MCA power struggle, even if there is a compromise solution whereby the MCA Tan Koon Swan faction is re-integrated with the Neo Yee Pan MCA faction, he would have the full authority to take part in the debate as officially representing the MCA. This is because if Tan Koon Swan only represents himself, nobody would be interested to debate with him either now or in the future.