After the spectacular spin that Lim Guan Eng put on the US Treasury’s decision to place Malaysia on its watch-list, another DAP minister, Yeo Bee Yin, has traced his footsteps, this time, on the Lynas rare earths mining saga.
According to her, the mining company would still have to resolve the issue of radioactive waste produced at its plant in Pahang before it is allowed to continue operations, which isn’t quite what Mahathir said.
Mahathir aside, Guan Eng was dead against the project and even told a press conference prior to May 2018 that the Penang state government “never wavered in its stand against rare earth plants and nuclear plants.”
PETALING JAYA: After the spectacular spin that Lim Guan Eng put on the US Treasury’s decision to place Malaysia on its watch-list, another DAP minister, Yeo Bee Yin, has traced his footsteps, this time, on the Lynas rare earths mining saga.
Yesterday, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad told a press conference in Tokyo, Japan, that Lynas Corp would be allowed to keep operating its processing plant in Malaysia, a plant that became all the fuss prior to the 14thgeneral election.
Ending months of speculation, the Prime Minister courted a barrage of criticisms as rights groups and netizens began ripping Pakatan Harapan apart for “betraying the people.”
Then, in a spectacular display of tai chi Guan Eng-style, Yeo clarified that the US800 mil Aussie-corp would still have to resolve the issue of radioactive waste produced at its plant in Pahang before it is allowed to continue operations, which isn’t quite what Mahathir said.
And it isn’t quite what the DAP said either.
Prior to May 2018, party secretary general and man-who-many-believe-signed-a-lifelong-contract-with Brylcream, Lim Guan Eng, spoke in his capacity as Chief Minister when insisting that the Penang state government “never wavered in its stand against rare earth plants and nuclear plants.”
“We will not allow any uranium extraction, rare earth and other materials to be harvested.
“Despite whatever environmental safeguards taken by the DoE (on rare earth and nuclear plants), the state government will not agree with it,” he said.
The remarks, made during a 24thof August 2017 press conference, were in reference to the Lynas project and directed at the (then) deputy president of the MCA, Dato’ Seri Wee Ka Siong.
Guan Eng was even spotted holding a placard that read “Stop Lynas, Save Malaysia” at an anti-Lynas demonstration that also saw participants holding “1Lynas Big Lie” banners.
Even more spectacular was the DAP sec-gen’s willingness to consider ‘select’ findings by the Department of Environment (DoE) on an illegal carbon filter processing factory in Kampung Sungai Lembu but his unwillingness to consider the same DoE’s take on Lynas and nuclear plants.
For a man who talks a helluva lot about “public safety” and “saving Malaysia,” he went ahead and protected a Penang state exco who prevented the Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP) from tearing down the illegal factory.
News of the factory’s existence stirred frenzy following revelations that the fumes and ash it billowed into the open caused the incidence of cancer in Kampung Sungai Lembu to surpass the national average by a factor of 23.
Despite the exposes by The Third Force (follow links below for disclosures) that included petitions by villagers, threats by legal firms, minutes of meetings and DoE reports, Guan Eng kept spinning the issue like a top but got cornered every time.
Still, if the DAP chief can spin his way out of illegal factories and cancer deaths, there is nothing stopping his subordinate from spinning her way out of the Lynas conundrum despite her boss’ pledge “never agree to uranium extraction or the harvesting of rare earth and other materials.”