DAP calls for Royal Commission of Inquiry into systemic failure of management and leadership at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport to ascertain how it could have five fires in two years, two goldbar robberies in four months and three ‘near-miss collisions’ in three weeks


by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjong, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, September 14, 1994:

DAP calls for Royal Commission of Inquiry into systemic failure of management and leadership at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport to ascertain how it could have five fires in two years, two goldbar robberies in four months and three ‘near-miss collisions’ in three weeks.

It is now revealed that there had been three and not two ‘near-miss collisions’ between two aircrafts at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in the past three weeks.

The first ‘near-miss collision’ was on August 17 between a MAS Boeing 737-400 from Jakarta and an Eva Air B767-300; the second on September 7 between a MAS B737-400 from Labuan and SIA Airbus; and a third one last Sunday between a Japan Airlines B747 and MAS B737.

DAP calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the systemic failure of management and leadership at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport to ascertain how it could have five fires in two years, two goldbar robberies in four months and three ‘near-miss collisions’ in three weeks.

We cannot accept that these airport disasters and accidents are the result of ‘human errors’, which totally ignore systemic management factors in the Transport Ministry, the Department of Civil Aviation and the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

When ‘human errors’ are accepted as the cause of these airport disasters, then the systems are not at fault and there is no need for any review of the entire management system. Furthermore, it tantamounts to accepting an attitude that such disasters are unavoidable as it is an inescapable fact that human errors will occur.

However, studies on disasters in other parts of the world have shown that disasters are for the most part preventable by having a sound management system.

The new Director-General of DCA to be appointed should be a person who believes that a sound management system can prevent disasters, rather than a person who believes that disasters and accidents are unpreventable because of human errors.

A Royal Commission of Inquiry into all the Kuala Lumpur International Airport fires, gold-bar robberies and ‘near-miss collisions’ should make an indepth study as to the real nature of systematic management failures at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport as to make it so disaster and accident-prone .