After PKA drops KDSB suit, former chief says just junk all PKFZ cases


(MMO) – Putrajaya “might as well” withdraw all outstanding cases over the multi-billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) project, Datuk Lee Hwa Beng said today after yet another major lawsuit over the scandal fell through Monday.

While saying he was no longer in a position to dictate the PKA’s actions, the authority’s former chairman noted that its retraction of its lawsuit to recover RM720 million from PKFZ’s developer, Kuala Dimensi Sdn Bhd, demonstrated a trend in abortive cases over the troubled port.

Lee pointed out that a lot of money has been spent by both PKA and Putrajaya in such cases, and said he would have liked to see them pursued to the end.

“Since I left and OTK left, they’ve started dropping so many cases,” Lee told Malay Mail Online, referring to former transport minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat. Both of them had helped initiate and oversee investigations into the PKFZ project when controversy over its cost first broke out.

In two separate criminal cases, former transport minister Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik and his successor, Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy, were both acquitted last October and this January, respectively, of cheating the government or government leaders over the PKFZ project.

“I suggest they should drop all other cases,” Lee said, saying that it would help save his time and other witnesses’ time as well as taxpayers’ funds, besides allowing everyone to move forward.

It was also “not fair” to drop the bigger PKFZ court cases and retain the smaller ones, he said.

According to Lee, there are four outstanding cases over the PKFZ project, including two criminal cases against former PKA general manager OC Phang, PKFZ turnkey contractor KDSB chief operating officer Steven Abok, and project architect Bernard Tan Seng Swee.

Two civil cases against Phang and the project architect also remain, Lee said.

When it was pointed out that his suggestion would not enable the recovery of millions or help uncover the truth behind the scandal, Lee indicated that he was not hopeful that there would be any results towards either.

“I don’t see the current regime, whether federal government or transport minister or PKA, they will pursue to the very end (sic),” the former Selangor state lawmaker said.

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