Saturday, December 5, 2009

Bukit Antarabangsa Landslide report declassified

Malaysian Insider reported the following

Cabinet declassifies Bukit Antarabangsa landslide report


KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 5 — The Federal Cabinet has agreed to declassify the report on Bukit Antarabangsa landslide that killed five almost exactly a year ago, Works Minister Datuk Shaziman Abu Mansor said tonight.

He said the cabinet made the decision after the Ampang Jaya Municipal Council (MPAJ) applied to make it public.

“We have decided to make the report public to safeguard the interest and wellbeing of the residents in the area,” Shaziman told reporters in Gemencheh.

Just wonder if it is for the benefit of the residents, why not do it as soon as when the report is ready?

The Barisan Nasional federal government had earlier warned Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim that he might have broke secrecy laws when releasing a report on the Dec 6 landslide.

The report had said a burst water pipe had triggered the landslide in the waterlogged leafy suburb, destroying 14 houses and causing millions in damages

“It is also my hope that the MPAJ will take remedial measures to ensure such an incident does not recur especially in the current rainy season,” Shaziman added.

The MPAJ had written to Shaziman on Nov 25 asking that the report be made public as the document was then still classified under the Official Secrets Act 1972 after Khalid backpedalled on making it public.

Shaziman said the Cabinet’s decision had nothing to do with the findings being uploaded onto the internet.

“We are merely following the set procedures. The report was made for the MPAJ and we could not make it public without their knowledge.”So, when they wrote to me asking that the findings be made public, I agreed after consulting members of the Cabinet...that is the procedure,” he said.

Oh! Yes! the declassification process needs 10 days. Even it is of public interest, not just residents of the affected area. Mr Minister, where is your KPI??

Hitting out at the Pakatan Rakyat state government, Shaziman said the federal government did not make hasty decisions like the Selangor government.

“We have nothing to long as the procedures are followed, we will make the information available to the people.

Mr Minister, if the Present Selangor Government is BN, will you say the same? Why should minister brought in politics, when he is representing the ministry, not his party on this matter??

“It is also my hope that the Selangor government would from Monday work on the proposals set in the report which include cleaning the drains and strengthening the slopes in the affected area... don’t just keep the report and do nothing about it,” he added.

Shaziman said his officers had lodged a police report on Wednesday over the leak, adding it occured only after the Public Works Department handed over the report to MPAJ.

Council president Datuk Mohammad Yacob said once the report was declassified, copies would be made available to the public at a cost of RM80 each.

Why should the Government, be it Federal, State, or local council charge for the report? Can RM80 make you rich? If you cannot afford to give away, let it be on the Internet for interested party to download la, why still want to charge??

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