by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Tuesday, May 14, 1991:
DAP calls on Cabinet tomorrow to decide that eight Ministers and the Selangor Mentri Besar should appear before Royal Commission of Inquiry to give public testimony on the role of their Ministries in the Sungai Buloh fireworks factory disaster explosion.
Malaysians are very disappointed that the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Sungai Buloh fireworks factory disaster explosion had not been set up yesterday as promised by the Deputy Prime Minister, Ghafar Baba.
The delay in the establishment of the Royal Commission of Inquiry has increased public concern as to whether really independent and courageous members would be appointed to get to the bottom of the great Sungai Buloh man-made disaster with the widest terms of reference and fullest freedom to conduct its investigation.
Further developments in the Sungai Buloh explosion disaster has shown that apart from the Selangor Government headed by the Mentri Besar, Tan Sri Muhamed Taib, and six Ministries, namely the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Labour, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Science and Environment, Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, the role of another two Federal Ministries in the Sungai Buloh disaster would have to be investigated.
These two Ministries are the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Health.
This is because the Customs Department, which is under the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Health, had been accused of negligence in allowing the import of basic chemical ingredients used in the manufacture of fireworks, including barium nitrate which is a scheduled poison, without proper approvals.
Bright Sparklers Sdn. Bhd. had illegally imported 40 metric tons of barium nitrate in1985, 60 metric tons in1986 and another 60 metric tons in 1987 although no licences were issued as required under the Poisons Ordinance for these imports.
It is shocking at the manner in which more and more Ministries are implicated in one way or another in the illegal operation of the fireworks factory in a residential area for 17 years. At the rate things are going, the entire Federal Government may be involved in one way or another in the Bright Sparklers Sdn. Bhd.
The DAP calls on the Cabinet at its meeting tomorrow to make a policy decision that the eight Federal Ministers whose Ministries are known to be involved in the Sungai Buloh fireworks factory operation, and the Selangor Mentri Besar, should appear before the Royal Commission of Inquiry to give public testimony on the role of their Ministries in the Sungai Buloh disaster.
If the eight Federal Ministers and the Selangor Mentri Besar refuse to appear before the Royal Commission of Inquiry to give public testimony, then the Royal Commission of Inquiry members should have the powers and the courage to sub-poena them to give evidence on the role of their Ministries and departments in the Sungai Buloh disaster.