KOTA KINABALU: A Parti Warisan Sabah leader has challenged former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to explain to Sabahans in details about the Trans Sabah Gas Pipeline (TSGP) scandal that had been unearthed by the Federal Ministry of Finance in June 2018.
In making the call, the party’s Treasurer General, Terrence Siambun, said that Najib owed an explanation to Sabahans, especially the Kimanis folks on the matter.
“Najib came to Sabah and alleged that Kimanis lost everything when the recent cancellation of the infrastructure project’s Project Delivery Partner (PDP) had caused it to be ‘abandoned’ .
“However, our Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal had explained that the billion-ringgit mega project will continue, but using new formulas and approaches which will cut expenditure.
“Now I want to ask Najib on the TSGP; 88% of the total cost of RM4.06 billion had been paid for the project but no pipelines have been laid with only 11.4% of land clearing has been completed.
“On top of that, I was made to know that part of the terms and conditions of the contract given to the China Petroluem Pipeline Bureau (CPPB) on 1 November 2016 states, among others, entailed the money should be paid regardless of the construction progress and workers/materials to be imported from China, leaving Sabahans not benefitting from the projects.
“How could he be agreeable to such condition by allowing payment to be made up to 88% whereas the progress work is only 11%?” Siambun said in a statement yesterday.
“On June 5, 2018, Najib defended the method of payment and cautioned the PH government from making politically-motivated public allegations involving China’s state-owned enterprise (SOE) as it may have a negative effect on foreign relations and international trade while at the same time insist that the deal would benefit Malaysia through China’s assurance to import goods worth US$2 trillion over the period of five years.
“We are however being presented with another side of the story when Najib’s former Special Officer, Datuk Amhari Efendi Nazaruddin told the High Court during the 1MDB-Tanore trial on September 4, 2019 that Najib offered the TSGP project to the China’s SOE through the participation of Jho Low as a mean to bail out 1MDB debts that had gained attention during that time.
“And the most shocking revelation of all is that Najib had also offered the development of Labuan island as a tourism and offshore banking hub to the Chinese!
“What would have happened if the Federal Government is unable to repay the payment guaranteed to SSER if the Chinese had decided to take the offer to develop Labuan in the first place?
“Being business-minded, they (the Chinese) would have forfeited Labuan and have total control as to how the island is being managed to cater for their own business needs the way they did it in Sri Lanka and Papua New Guinea.
“So while the idea on TSGP is good, it had been exploited with ridiculous terms and conditions that it is beneficial only to one party to the expense of Sabah rendering its cancellation by the current government.”
Siambun reckoned that the State opposition leaders should make their stand on this matter since the President of Parti Warisan Sabah, Shafie Apdal, was the first former Umno leader in Sabah who stood up and defied Najib on the 1MDB issue.
“The revelation by his former Special Officer on TSGP and Labuan only made us to come to the conclusion that he did try to use Sabah as a mean to save himself from the 1MDB fiasco which in my opinion, is akin to mortgaging Sabah to other country.
“What I would like to know is, ‘what is the position of our State Umno leaders on this matter whom I saw in pictures were walking arm-in-arm with Najib during the nomination day in Kimanis?
“The State Umno leaders or even those from PBS should not be afraid of Najib nor be hopeful with him anymore; he already lost all his powers and in fact, the ‘Bossku’ is a big liability here in Sabah.
“So since Najib is coming to Sabah on January 11, it will be good if he explain it to us in detail about the TSGP scandal and for this matter, Datuk Seri Maximus Ongkili should also come since he was the former Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister that planned the project, just in case if Najib do want to make the explanation.
“It will even be better if our Minister of Finance, Lim Guan Eng or Tony Pua can also drop by to Kimanis on the same date and perhaps we can see a friendly debate in Kimanis between the two of them on the issue.
“After all, TSGP starts from Kimanis,” Siambun concluded. — Borneo Post