by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lin Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, 7th December 1994:
Anwar Ibrahim should announce a concrete set of measures on the first anniversary of the. Highland Towers Collapse Tragedy to give meaningful government assistance to the survivors and victims
In another four days, it will be the first anniversary of the Highland Towers Coilapse Tragedy on December 11 last year, where 48 lives were lost.
At that time, the Highland Towers Tragedy was the focus of national and international attention with one Cabinet Minister after another visiting the site in the glare of mass media publicity.
Today however, the victims and survivors of the Highland Towers Tragedy seem to have been completely forgotten by Cabinet Ministers who had made frequent visits to the site last year.
For the past year, the victims and survivors of the Highland Towers Tragedy were left to fend for themselves and to face the emotional, psychological, financial and legal consequences primarily on their own.
The Ampang Jaya Municipal Council directive earlier this year that the two remaining Highland Towers blocks must be repaired within three month or be demolished is an example where the government authorities have abandoned the Highland Towers victims and survivors when they should be thinking of ways and means to help them to alleviate their sufferings and problems – including the rehabilitation of the two remaining blocks.
In fact, the Ampang Jaya Municipal Council has an added responsibility to go out of its way to help the Highland Towers survivors and victims because it was one of the primary causes for the Highland Towers tragedy.
If the Ampang Jaya Municipal Council and its predecessor-in-title, like the previous Gombak District Council, had not been negligent in approving building plans as well as monitoring neighbouring property development to the Highland Towers, the tragedy would not have occured.
Up to now, the survivors and victims have received very little concrete help from the authorities and even the Police, which claimed to be conducting its own investigation into the Highland Towers Tragedy, has not come out with any findings.
As the Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was the Chairman of the Cabinet Committee on the Highland Towers Tragedy, he should announce a concrete set of measures on the first anniversary of the Highland Towers Collapse Tragedy to give meaningful government assistance to the survivors and victims so that their problems could be resolved with the minimum of bureaucratic and legal hassle.