DAP hails Tun Hussein Onn’s statement and calls on government to stop Dragging its feet to give full public accounting of the $2.5 billion BMF loans scandal.

Press Statement by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Kota Melaka, Lim Kit Siang, in Ipoh on Thursday, 4.7.1985;

DAP hails Tun Hussein Onn’s statement and calls on government to stop Dragging its feet to give full public accounting of the $2.5 billion BMF loans scandal.

The DAP hails the statement by Tun Hussein Onn yesterday on the BMF loans scandol inquiry and actions, for what the former Prime Minister said represented the views and feelings of the overwhelming majority of Malaysians.

Tun Hussein Onn’s forthright and outspoken criticism of the
manner the government authorities had handled the $2.5 billion Bumiputra Malaysia
Finance (BMF) loans scandal in Hong Kong, the biggest financial
and banking scandal in Malaysia, is also the view of the people of Malaysia
at large.

With the passage of time, and the lack of any concrete or
positive to report on the BMF loans scandal, the public had gained the,
impression that the Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Committee had been formed
to hide the entire loans scandal under the carpet.

Tun Hussein Onn is right when he said that Malaysians should
not expect the Hong Kong authorities to be as ‘keen’ as us to get to
the bottom of the BMF looms scandal, for after all, it is not their affair and not
their money. But from what had transpired in the last three years,
the Malaysian authorities seemed to be less keen than the Hong Kong authorities
to fully probe into the BMF loans scandal!

The various government authorities should stop dragging their
feet and on the necessary actions to be taken on the BMF loans scandal,
and should publicly explain their procrastinations and unwarranted delays
in taking appropriate action within their respective jurisdictions:

1.The Cabinet seems to have taken the attitude that since the Ahmad Nordin
BMF Inquiry Committee has been formed, and would be taking a very long time
to finalise its report, it had no more responsibility on the matter for the present.
Thus, Parliament was told last December that as the Ahmad Nordin BMF
Inquiry Committee had not completed its final report, it could not take any
action yet. Does this mean that if the Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Committee
could not complete its final report, because of its inability to get all necessary
information and particulars, the Government would not have to take any action at all?

2. The Attomcy-General has procrastinated in reaching a decision
to bring the BMF culprits to book although the first police investigations
arising from Bank Bumiputra police reports lodged
in November last year was completed in February and the investigation
papers submittcd to the Attorney-General. The Attorney-General Office and the
police must not be seen to be very prompt and energetic to look after private
property interests – like the recent report by Magnum Corporation about
Empat Ekor rigging, where the police is swinging into nation-wide action
and investigation – but while on an matter of vital public interest involving
$2.5 billion of public money, the authorities are indifferent to the extent of being

3. Bank Bumiputra must explain why its has taken over half a
year to act on the recommendations of the Ahmad Nordin BMF
Inquiry Committee to lodge police reports in Hong Kong,
also this recommendation was made by the Inquiry Committee
in all its briefs.

4. The Ahmad Nordin BMF Inquiry Committee should also be aware
that ‘Justice delayed is Justice denied’, and that if its briefs and reports classified
as ‘secret’ and ‘confidential’ documents, it had failed to serve the higher interests of
public justice.

The Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee should also make a
policy decision on the time frame of its work, for it is
just no satisfactory that it would have to await another
few years after the final outcome of the Hong Kong trials
of George Tan before it could submit its final report.
This is because the BMF Inquiry Committee would then become
the instrument in the ‘cover-up’ of the BMF loans scandal,
apart from minimal exposure which would be made in any
event in the George Tan trials.

I have great respect for the integrity of Tan Sri Ahmad
Nordin, and I would respectfully suggest that should he f
ind it impossible to conclude his committee’s inquiries
within a reasonable period of time, the Committee should
present a final report of all available information in its command
and publicly declare that it could not get any further and
recommend the formation of a Royal Commission of Inquiry
into the BMF loans scandal.

Although the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed,
is now beset with many political, economic and other problems, the
BMF loans scandal deserve his urgent and priority consideration, for
it remains a test case of his government’s commitment to a
clean, efficient and trustworthy government.

What efficiency could the Mahathir administration boast about
if the inquiry into the BMF leans scandal had not advanced very far
the principle of public accountability for all public funds and the
right of public to know about the root cause of the BMF loans scandal.

The various government authorities, including the Cabinet,
should stop dragging their feet to force an early accounting of the loans
scandal and to bring the BMF culprits to book, for otherwise, the
Barisan Nasional government would have failed in its stewardship
of public funds amounting to $2.5 billion.

It is most saddening that there appears, to be no sense of moral outrage
among government leaders over the $2.5 billion BMF loans
scandal. The general impression is that it was unlucky or unfortunate
that the BMF loans scandal became public. This reminds me of the
same public apathy, indifference and lack of moral outrage over the Bank Rakyat

This means that there would be more BMF and Bank Rakyat scandals
involving even greater amounts of public in the future, for the government
is not serious in wanting to root out such gross abuse of public trust and funds.