LCCT: A case of naive or pied pipered tikus baited by a labu?
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat (OTK) was reported to confirm the Cabinet approval for the joint proposal by Sime Darby and Airasia for a new LCCT at Labu, Negeri Sembilan.
That statement can be taken as good for the time being. But as creature bestowed upon by Allah with brains, never should one take the words of another mortal as Gospel or Quranic or Vedic truth. More so, in this administrative era of a Prime Minister that is blurred, "flip flop" in his decision, and kow tow to some invisible puppetmasters. Pak Lah may have made decisions based on "which side of the bed he slept in last night".
There have been many occasions Cabinet approved something, but what was announced as something else. Under Abdullah, it happened not only in UMNO meetings chaired by Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib, but at Cabinet level too.
An example would be the Airline Rationalisation Plans in 2006/7, which was approved by the Cabinet on Wednesday, redid over the weekend by Zaki Zahid and Tony Fernandez with Khairy acting as messenger to and from Putrajaya, and by Monday something else was announced. Ethos's Omar Ong is somewhere in the picture.
Since that incident, it is no more a surprise to this blogger that Cabinet may not have deliberated, perhaps KIV their decision, and thus not made any meaningful decision, but Abdullah would announced to the Press as approved. The most likely case is when Abdullah falls asleep in Cabinet meetings.
Rightfully pointed out by commentator Berasiam, the Cabinet is equally responsible. They should have championed and voice their reservations when public and rakyat's interest is at risk. But, for some strange reason, they choose to not shame our Prime Minister whose infamous for doing a buat bodoh or just plain idiot act.
This where the notion of saving face and maruah is misplaced. How could it supercede the interest of the nation as to not embarass a single idiot?
OTK's remark on the approval came with a strange twist. Straits Times reporter and Malaysian Permanent Resident, Reme Ahmad picked up this strange nuances. There are several angles he had not elaborated.
OTK News Report
Read the report on OTK's statement below:
The Star, Tuesday January 13, 2009------------------------------
Approval for Nilai LCCT given by all parties, says Tee Keat
KUALA LUMPUR: Approval for the new low-cost carrier terminal in Nilai, Negri Sembilan, was given by all the relevant parties, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat said.
He said questions about the suitability of the KLIA East@Labu project was not for the Transport Ministry to answer solely. “The ministry does not have the ultimate or entire say. It is a collective decision.
“Furthermore, it is a privatised project. It never came under the ministry,” he said after launching the MCA ICT Resource Centre Micro-Finance Expo here yesterday.
Ong was asked about the RM1.6bil joint venture between Sime Darby and AirAsia. He said some people assumed that he had the authority to approve the project when he started talking about future air traffic projections.
Ong clarified that questions about the new project being at odds with the KL International Airport Masterplan should be directed to the Finance Ministry. “Government-linked companies come under the Finance Ministry.
“And as far as the masterplan is concerned, this has yet to be endorsed as it is just the outcome of a study commissioned by Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad,” he said.
On the close proximity of the KLIA East@Labu airport to the KLIA and the LCCT, Ong said geographical distance was a separate matter as far as International Civil Aviation Organisation compliance was concerned.
“It will not be a problem.”
The commentararies to follow.
Pak Lah, Blur and Quiet ...
As relayed to this blogger, one post-Cab meeting described Pak Lah as being awfully quiet during the discussion on the new LCCT. That can mean he is either blurred or pretending.
For one thing, he is not blurred when it comes to Airasia. That is where the interest of Abdullah & Sons Ltd. obviously lies. What Airasia wants Airasia gets to the detriment of MAS and now MAB.
Lets recall what Pak Lah said in 2006 about Airasia to be given a chance because it is a Bumiputera company? Did anyone notice at least 51% Bumiputera equity in Airasia? Is or was there Malay shareholders behind what appears to be Nominees Company holding on behalf of non-Malay and foreign client-shareholders?
So, is Pak Lah pretending to be quiet?
If one has interest in anything, one could steer the discussion one way or another. But, one has to be smart to do that. Pak Lah does not impress as a Chairman with that kind of ability. He can't articulate himself well. When frustrated, he lose his cool and did the unprime minister thing to express his unreserved displeasure.
Another possibility is Pak Lah could be doing is to do a "buat bodoh" act and get someone else do the talking for you. By talking, one is giving away clues and Pak Lah is not smart enough to cover his clue.
Reading yesterday's Malay Mail, Johor Baru MP and Minister Dato Shahrir Samad defense of Musa's Sime Darby and "Abdullah & Sons Ltd." Airasia's proposal for the LCCT, he may have been one of his mouthpiece.
[Shahrir viewed it as a private deal between two parties. Hello ... can someone Rip Van "Shahrir" wake up? Its not 1987 and the Team A and Team B fight is over. He can stop being factionally defensive and call Musa's card a Blackheart a Blackheart. Airport development can't be just a mere private deal between two parties.]
While Pak Lah was doing his quiet and buat bodoh act, Transport Minister was actually totally blurred. He knew nuts of what was being discussed. That was the reason he was doing several Taichi moves in his statement.
Which relevent party approved?
OKT said all the relevent parties have approved. Lets screw him.
The front page of Malay Mail yesterday put up a strange headline. It reads "New airport will test safety margins and air traffic controllers, says DCA."
The insider revealed that it can't get the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) approval. Not with an Airport too close with another Airport - 40 km on land and effectively 10 km on air.
But, OTK was reported as saying "geographical distance was a separate matter as far as International Civil Aviation Organisation compliance was concerned." That should be sending shivers to any knee caps. Does that mean there is someone being assigned to cook up the technical numbers to justify the new LCCT?
OTK downplayed MAB's Masterplan as merely "the outcome of a study commissioned by Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad" that has yet to be endorsed by Cabinet. Why would Dr Mahathir mention it as a Masterplan if it had yet to be endorsed by Cabinet? Is there or is there not a Masterplan?
For someone blur about this proposal, isn't OKT's remarks strange?
It leads me to ask: Is OTK safeguarding someone's interest? Many industry insider suspect former Minister of Transport Dato' Chan Kong Choy pro-Airasia stance was to protect the interest of former Minister of Transport, Tun Ling Liong Sik? With OTK being defensive, may I dare to ask: Does MCA have a piece of the action in Airasia?
The DCA source further explained that KLIA@East will not be top most in the pecking order. An area can only have one main airport and the main airport has to be KLIA. How will Tony achieve the efficiency, fast turnaround and low cost he claimed with the new airport? His news airport, if it is built, will be swarmed by delays because KLIA will get priority over airspace in the pecking order.
By the time it is complete, don't expect Tony to get his way all the time. There is no more Abdullah as PM to do a buat bodoh any more. Khairy would have lost his attempt for Ketua Pemuda UMNO. Its likely to be Khir Toyo, or long shot Mukhriz. Zaki Zahid is no more at Tingkat 4 but some other TIngkat elsewhere. Tony will not have political muscle to get his way anymore. [Stock recomendation: Sell or dump Airasia!]
Until such, is something insidious being hurriedly done? Do I sense that there would be renewed pressure on Pak Lah to resign and time is something "they" have no more?
No MoT involvement in Privatisation?
Its tempting to bamboozled our Ministers but on recollection, many in the Cabinet and EPU may have forgotten the well documented and transparent standard operating privatisation procedure.
The current administration seemed to be so engrossed in finger pointing towards TDM for current woe as problems arising from privatisation that they forgot the much said PFI is a Build and Lease privatisation
What is not known to many, IJN privatisation had to be initially deferred because it did not comply with the privatisation procedure. The subsequent meeting between EPU, MOH, MOF and IJN was partly to redo the process.
Privatisation is not a totally top-down decision. The requirement to privatised must first be initiated by the respective Ministry concerned, in this case is the Ministry of Transport. A paper is drawn out and submitted to EPU for evaluation and review. There will be a series of discussions before a submission made to Cabinet for approval. There will still be some to and from from Cabinet to EPU. In the case of IJN, MOF was brought into the picture becasue they are 99% shareholder of MOF.
Is OKT saying the privatisation process is not right?
Is there any proper study done? Is MAB's claimed study the only one? Is the privatisation a top-down decision? The most funny and obvious observation from OKT's statement: Is this a privatisation where approve first and study later? Stupid isn't it?
What kind of MCA Minister do we have? What kind of MCA leadership do we have now? One is a porn star.
And, the President a chicken shit coward acting as a brave leader. During the MCA AGM, OTK came out as someone vocal, brave and forceful thats able to tell off UMNO. It is beginning to appear it is a mere act? OTK is like any Pak Lah's ass lickers. Bukan semua Cina pandai, banyak yang bodoh juga.
If Dato Najib had given a hint of his discomfort with the IJN privatisation, his statement on LCCT doesn't indicate so. Perhaps it will be interesting to hear his response to OKT remarks.
This is an awfully tiring Midnight Regulation. Just hoping, Pak Lah is not going to do a "Gaza" on Kuala Terengganu if his favourite boy Wan Farid lose?