by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya onMonday, January 13, 1992:
DAP calls on Government to implement the Third Bumiputera Economic Congress resolution to review performance of government agencies by explaining why Bank Pertanian again lost over $100 million in 1990, after suffering $305 million losses in 1988 and 1989
One of the resolution passed by the Third Bumiputera Economic Congress which ended yesterday called for “Review of performance and role of government agencies and to increase accountability”.
DAP calls on the Barisan Nasional Government to immediately implement resolution by issuing a White Paper to explain why Bank Pertanian Malaysia (BPM) again lost over $100 million in 1990, after suffering $305 million losses in 1988 and 1989.
The 1988 and 1989 Bank Pertanian Annual Reports, which were tabled in the Dewan Rakyat only last months, reported that in 1988, Bank Pertanian suffered a loss of $46,408,611 while in 1989, Bank Pertanian suffered an even bigger loss of $258,959,343.
With the Bank Pertanian suffering another loss of over a $100 million for 90, Bank Pertanian would have lost over $410 million in the three years from 1988-1990.
If the Government is not concerned with a such a colossal loss suffered by one government agency in three years, then nobody will believe in all the talk and the resolution at the Third Bumiputera Economic Congress about the “review of the performance and role of government agencies and to increase accountability.”
Government White Paper on $410 million Bank Pertanian scandal
The Government White Paper on $410 million Bank Pertanian scandal should also explain what accounting tricks were employed to allow Bank Pertanian to turn itself from a loss position to a profit position in June 1991.
For instance, in March 1991, the Bank Pertanian general manager publicly warned that BPM was on the verge of collapse unless it gets an injection of $400 million from Bank Negara ‘fast enough’.
However, when the Finance Ministry and Bank Negara refused to provide this $400 million to bail out Bank Pertanian Malaysia, the Minister for Agriculture, Datuk Sanusi Junid and BPM officials suddenly started to announce from June onward that Bank Pertanian had turned-around and was making profits!
To justify such a ‘miraculous’ turnaround, three separate sets of Statements of Accounts for Bank Pertanian in the mid-year of 1991 were used! This is the second great scandal of Bank Pertanian Malaysia, apart from its $410 million losses of the past three years.
If it is true that Bank Pertanian Malaysia could in a month or two turn-around a bank which was on the verge of collapse unless there was an immediate injection of $400 million-to make profits even without the $400 million recue- then the bank officers in Bank Pertanian Malaysia are rare ‘miracle-men’ in the banking world who should be seconded by Bank Negara to all the other commercial banks, particularly these which had to be given ‘first-aid’ by Bank Negara, to continue to perform their banking ‘miracles’!