Saturday, February 03, 2007

Of treats and threats....

Normally, the children in USA will go door to door with their fancy costumes and the immortal words of "treat or trick" during the haloween whilst the older guys/gals will party the night away.

In Malaysia, the "treat and trick" has been dramatically changed to "treat or threats" where the higher up in the political echelon will pass his decree to remind the normal guys on the street to toe the line or else...

Just the other day, the Minister of Public Works has revealed the repair cost of Middle Ring Road II (MRR) which comes up to RM 70 million from the initial RM 40 million announced a year earlier. This is 75 % more than the initial estimate provided by the same Ministry. Now, the question that goes begging is whose fault is it? Has the Ministry and its in-house experts has undersetimate the repair cost? Or has the Contractor inflate the price? As this is a public project, with public money, the Ministry shall be more responsible in providing data and details.

And yet the same Minister is more concern with the toll agreement with the private toll operators. The Minister, upping the Ministry of Internal Affairs declare that the documents pertaining to the toll is classified as OSA. The question is when is the documents regarded as OSA and when does the OSAship of the documents can be declared as null and void. Being a layman, an OSA document can be recklessly left on the table for all to see unless the cover is printed in bold, red wordings of OSA or similar with appropriate warnings like those found by the side of a cigarrete box.

So where is the treat ? The treat is for the public to use MRR and the tolled highway. And the threats ? Additional RM 30 million (75 % more than the estimate) to be borne by public funds and also the ever increasing toll along the highways.

Further threats come in the form of OSA when the toll increament was challenged by the opposition.

And in all this affair, the Kingpin of Malaysia's BN is busy warding off news like the new executive jet, yatch, nasi kandar restaurant in Perth, free trade talks with USA etc.

It is no surprise that all this leads to the question on competency, who is competent enough to lead the country towards achieving Vision 2020 and whether what the public is facing now is the "treat or threat" situation, in view of speculations of an early General Election.

Till then...G'nite M'sia, wherever u are...

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