By Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Tuesday, November 12, 1991:
Call on Ling Liong Sik to explain why the MCA Ministers and leaders capitulated so easily in Government and Cabinet in their earlier opposition to the inflating of Chinese corporate equity share to reach 45 per cent in 1990
During question time in Parliament yesterday, I asked why the Government resorted to ‘statistical juddling and dishonestly’ in inflating the Chinese corporate equity share fot the year 1990 in both the Second Outline Perspective Plan and the Sixth Malaysia Plan.
In my question, I pointed out that when the Government presented the fifth Malaysia Plan Mid-Term Review in Parliament in June 1989, it gave the following breakdown of corporate equity ownership for 1988 and the estimated targets to be achieved in1990:
Mid Term Review of Fifth Malaysia Plan (June 1989)
Ownership Group 1988 1990
Bumiputra individual & trust agencies 19.4 19.6
Chinese 32.6 32.5
Indians 1.2 1.2
Others 1.0 0.9
Nominee Companies 8.1 8.5
Local Controlled Companies (LCC) 13.1 13.6
Foreigners 24.6 23.7
However, two-year later, when the Government presented the Second Outline Perspective Plan 1991-2000 in June 1991, the chine corporate equity share in 1990 made a 12.4 per cent jump from the estimated 32.5 per cent given by the Fifth Malaysian Plan Mid-Term Review to 44.9 per cent in the Second Outline Perspective Plan.
The category of Local Controlled Companies (LCC), which has been defined as “the total value of share capital of limited companies whose ownership cannot be disaggregated further and assigned, beyond the second level of ownership, to specific ethnic groups”, has disappeared.
Not only has the LCC category, which is estimated to represent 13.6 per cent of corporate equity share in 1990, has disappeared, it would appear that the bulk of it (i.e. 12.4 per cent of total corporate equity) has just been lumped to the Chinese corporate equity share to make up the fantastic jump of 12.4 per cent in two years – which would set a world record if it were true!
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister’s Department, Othman Abdul, denied that there was ‘statistical juggling and dishonestly’. His explanation was that the Statistics Department used the LCC concept from 1970 to 1983, and after 1983, the LCC concept was dropped; and that the Government now has more up-to-date figures from the Registry of Companies.
If this is the case, how did the Mid-Term Review of the Fifth Malaysia Plan, which was presented to Parliament in June 1989, used to LCC concept, stating that LCC represented 13.1 per cent of corporate equity in 1988 and estimated to represent 13.6 per cent in 1990?
Where did the Mid-Term Review of the Fifth Malaysia Plan get these LCC data when the Statistics Department had stopped using the LCC concept six years ago in 1983 – for this must mean that the Government example of statistical jugglery and dishonestly?
What was even more shocking was Othman Abdul’s answer to my supplementary question. I asked what method were used by the Government to get the MCA Minister and leaders to agree to the Second OPP data on Chinese corporate equity share, which inflated its stake by 12.4 per cent in a matter of two years, when MCA leaders had over the years protested against the dumpling of the LCC equity share to the Chinese category.
Othman Abdul said this was simple as the MCA leaders were satisfied by the government’s explanation.
This is most unsatisfactory. I call o the MCA President, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik, to explain why the MCA Ministers and leaders capitulated to easily in Government and Cabinet in their earlier opposition to inflating the Chinese corporate equity share by lumping the LCCs into the Chinese category.
Until early 1991, MCA leaders were declaring that it was most unfair unjust to lump the LCCs shares to the Chinese corporate equity, but in the meantime, inside the Government and Cabinet, MCA Ministers had long surrendered on this issue.
Is this the real nature of MCA politics – loud and even fierce protest in public, but total capitulation in Government and Cabinet by MCA Ministers?