Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang, on the 24th of November, 2014
It was reported today that the Port of Klang Authority (PKA) decided last Friday, on the 21st of November 2014, to drop one of its lawsuits against Kuala Dimensi Sdn Bhd (KDSB) regarding RM720 million in interest payments on the land bought from KDSB to develop the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ).
This shocking decision must be explained publicly by Tan Sri Kong Cho Ha, the newly appointed chairman of PKA, because of the involvement of taxpayer’s funds. PKA incurred a loss of RM201 million for the Financial Year 2013 and has accumulated losses of RM674 million since 2010. If not for the continued assistance of the Federal Government via a long term government loan at a low interest rate of 4% per annum and deferred interest payments until 2018, the ability of PKA to survive as a going concern would be very much in doubt, as stated by the Auditor General’s office in PKA’s 2013 Annual Report.
If PKA was able to recoup some of the RM720 million in disputed interest payments from KDSB, it would help in decreasing the financial burden of PKA and allow it to pay back some of its long term debt to the government. Indeed, according to the PKA’s 2013 Annual Report, Rm1.82 billion was set aside as a contingent asset which it could claim back if the outstanding civil suits taken up against KDSB were successful. Even if not all of this RM1.82 billion could be claimed back, any portion would be helpful to strengthen the current financial position of PKA.
The Ministry of Finance must also explain why its representative on the board – Datuk Dr Mohd Isa Hussain – was absent from the board meeting last Friday where the decision to drop the lawsuit was made. All current and future financial assistance and support given to PKA must ultimately come from the Ministry of Finance and to be absent when such an important decision is made is mind-boggling.
Is this recent decision by the PKA board a pre-cursor to dropping the 2nd lawsuit by PKA against KDSB (and the architect – BTA Architect) to recover RM920 million in disputed charges over the development agreement to build PKFZ? Will PKA’s lawsuit against former PKA General Manager OC Phang for the breach of fiduciary duties also be dropped?
With the acquittal of Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik and the withdrawal of 3 charges against Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy and now the dropping of the 1st lawsuit against KDSB, will we see a situation where all those involved in the PKFZ scandal are let off leaving only the taxpayer to pick up the bill?