Wednesday, August 12, 2009

RM10 million "loan" to Ong Tee Keat?

(Update 13/8/09: Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat has finally "categorically denied" that he received the RM10 million loan from Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing, after yesterday's convoluted statement)

The show is just getting exciting. Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) 2 days ago took Kuala Dimensi Sdn Bhd (KDSB) the developer for the project to the cleaners for either fraud or overcharging as much as RM1 billion in fees.

Today, the owner of KDSB, who is also the Barisan Nasional MP for Bintulu, Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing decided that enough was enough and took the Minister of Transport to the cleaners by alleging that Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat took a RM10 million loan from him "to give to MCA divisions".

Tiong, who is also the BN Backbenchers' Club (BBC) chairman even admitted willingly that he regularly "donated" millions to people.

Ong Tee Keat issued an immediate statement, which The Malaysian Insider took as a denial. But true to form, Ong's statement is pretty wordy and convoluted. You'll have to read through quite a few times to decide what exactly he was trying to say or imply. And I'm still not sure. You can also read his Chinese statement here, and it reads the same to me.

All I'm sure is that after reading it a couple of times (below), I don't see any sentence which says "I did not take a single cent of cash or loan from Tiong". I also did not read a sentence which says, "I will sue Tiong for defamation", which he has been inclined to do recently to Chinese newspapers which did not portray him in positive light. ;-)
I am not surprised that the smear tactics and character assassination against me had picked up pace especially with the latest revelations by the PKFZ Task Force.

If indeed I have received pecuniary and financial benefits for myself or the Party, there will be more reasons for me to protect the interests of the givers, as opposed to proceeding to expose their misdeeds. By doing so, I am risking my personal and family safety as well as my own credibility.

The allegation by Dato’ Seri Tiong King Sing that I have taken the RM10 million "loan" from him for use by the Party's divisions, are obviously made with several motives, including diverting attention away from the alleged irregularities exposed by the Task Force. It could also be meant to create suspicion among my Party comrades that I have pocketed funds meant for the divisions. The fact that he indicated that it was a loan could mean that he wants the option of taking me to court to further embarrass me.

The period mentioned by Dato' Seri Tiong was 2008, during which I was vice-president until I assumed the presidency in October. The need for me as vice-president to raise money for the divisions was a non-starter. Later, as President, we already have access to party funds and allocations. I doubt any reasonable person would part with RM10 million based on such a story.
Make no mistake, I support the Minister's actions 100% to take KDSB to court for alleged fraud and over-charging and commend him for taking such actions. But the above statement, in my humble opinion, certainly raise more questions than answers.
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