Call on Kamunting Corporation Bhd, which made RM275 million net profit from the 16-year Jalan Kuching toll concession, to give a full public statement of its accounts and state how many tens of millions of ringgit donations it gave to Barisan Nasional component parties during the whole period

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang

(Petaling Jaya, Monday): In 1999, the seven-year extension of the Jalan Kuching toll concession till January 2003 to Kamunting Corporation Bhd. after its original nine-year concession 1987-1996 without any road upgrading was a centerpiece of the anti-toll protests spearheaded by the Coalition Against Toll (CAT).

CAT was established by political parties and NGOs including DAP, DAPSY, Wanita DAP, Parti Rakyat, PAS, ADIL, ABIM, Perak Consumers' Association, Selangor Consumers' Association, Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall Youth, MTUC and others.

As Chairman of CAT in 1999, I can state that the anti-toll protest at the Jalan Kuching toll on February 7, 1999 was one of the hightlights of the 1999 anti-toll protest campaign, participated by Malaysians from all political parties (but confined only to the Opposition), regardless of race or religion at the unjustied toll imposition burdening all Malaysians, whether Malays, Chinese or Indians.

In the nine years from 1987 to 1996, when Kamunting Corporation Bhd. incurred RM60 million for the original construction and another RM14 million for road upgrade work, the concessionaire collected RM183 million toll.

Parliament was informed in October last year that in the seven-year extension until August last year, Kamunting Corporation Bhd. had collected another RM144.5 million from toll.

At the average of RM1.4 million a month toll collection, Kamunting Corporation Bhd. would have collected about RM350 million for the whole 16-year toll concession when it ends at midnight tomorrow, Tuesday, 7th January 2003.

This would mean that Kamunting Corporation would have made some RM275 million net profit for the entire concession period of 16 years or RM17 million a year for 16 years from Jalan Kuching toll - just collecting money from the public at the toll plaza.

DAP calls on Kamunting Corporation to give a full public statement of its accounts for the entire concession period, which should also state how many tens of millions of ringgit donations it gave to Barisan Nasional component parties during the whole period.

It is outrageous that the MCA in the Federal Territory is planning a fireworks celebrations countdown for the end of the Jalan Kuching toll tomorrow, when the MCA had done nothing to support the anti-toll public campaign in the past 16 years.

The people who should be at Jalan Kuching toll plaza to mark its termination are ordinary Malaysians from all races who had supported the anti-toll campaign all these years, in particular those who in 1999 came together to support the Coalition Against Toll and articulate the public protest at the injustice of the extension of the Jalan Kuching toll.

Together with members and supporters of the Coalition Against Toll of 1999 which spearheaded the anti-toll campaign that year, I will revisit the Jalan Kuching Toll plaza at 11 pm tomorrow to mark the countdown of its termination, which should be a source of inspiration for the people to continue their pressure for greater government sensitivity and responsiveness to public demands to end the oppression of tolls not only in the Federal Territory, but in the rest of the country.


* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman