Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the Perak DAP Ceramah on North-south Highway Scandal held at Ipoh Town Hall on Sunday, 6.9.1987 at 8 p.m.
DAP has decided to launch a nation-wide mass signature campaign to oppose and protest against the one-sided, exploitative and oppressive UEM contract terms for the privatization of North-South Highway in expecting to make $20 billion profits
DAP has decided to launch a nation-wide signature campaign to to oppose and protest against the one-sided, exploitative and oppressive UEM contract terms for the privatization of North-South Highway in expecting to make $20 billion profit from the deal.
The details of the nation-wide mass signature campaign against the UEM contract for the North-South Highway would be announced shortly.
Recently in Johore Bahru, the Prime Minister, Datuk Serib Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, said that the UEM contract for the North-South Highway was necessary to enable the UMNO to pay the debts for its $360 million UMNO complex. This is completely unacceptable, and could not be a justification or excuse for any conflict of interest, abuse of power or breach of trust. Otherside, in future, all conflict of interest, abuse of power, breach of trust, and even corruption, could be justified on the ground that there is no other way to clear heavy debts incurred by the person or party concern.
In this connection, the MCA, Gerakan and MIC and other Barisan Nasional component parties must be condemn, for not speaking up to block the UEM contract for the privatization of the North South Highway on terms which will mortgage the future of Malaysians for 30 years.
MCA has also hefty party debts of $50 million. Are the MCA Ministers and leaders keeping quite on the UEM contract for North-South Highway, in the hope that a precedent could be established, whereby MCA could also expect s cut in the government’s privatization programme to help pay for MCA’s $50 million debt?
The people of Malaysia of all races and regions must make their voice of opposition to the UEM contract for North-South Highway known to their MPs and Ministers. I suggest that henceforth, whenever Barisan MPs or Ministers appear before them, the people should question them on the UEM contract on the North-South Highway, to ask them how they could condone such a blatant exploitation of the Malaysian people for 30 years.
The terms for the UEM contract for North-South Highway are so one-sided and detrimental to the interest of the people, that any individual, group or company could build the North-South Highway, for all the risks are borne by the government, all the profits go to UEM, and UEM is even guaranteed against losses.
In fact, the 23 co-operatives which collectively had brought about the $1.5 billion co-operative finance scandal, could construct the North-South Highway and make $20 billion profit of it is awarded the privatization on the terms asked by UEM.
This is because the terms are so favourable and one-sided, that no experience is needed, but only the opportunity to get the contract. All the experience and financing will be provided by other groups (including $1.65 billion government loan). This is why UEM, whish has not built an inch or road, or a foot of bridge, which is in the red by some $100 million and still suspended from the stock exchange, could bid for the North-South Highway privatisation contract.