Sunday, March 21, 2010

Lim Kit Siang to Najib: Explain 'massive' oil find

DAP Parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang wants the government to disclose full details of an alleged new oilfield discovered by national oil company Petronas.

"I call on the PM Datuk Seri Najib (Razak) to make a ministerial statement in parliament tomorrow (today) on this very important subject, the biggest oil find in the Malaysian history and the role of Petronas because Petronas is now contributing about 42 per cent to the country’s revenue," he told reporters here yesterday.

Lim was commenting on Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah’s statement on Saturday that he had been told of the discovery of a new oilfield by Petronas, which could be the biggest oilfield in the world.

"I have heard about this but up to now the government has not made any announcement. I think this should not be kept under-wraps.

“Malaysians have a right to know as it will mean that the future of Malaysia will be cast in a different light.

"It is (also) very important in view of the ongoing controversy over oil royalty for the oil-producing states in Malaysia.

"The government would have gone bankrupt without the oil money and there must be proper accountability on how this Petronas money is being spent.

"There must be a total review of the whole question of Petronas, the oil royalty and the question of the oil find," he said.

Lim reiterated Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) call for the review and increase of the 5 per cent oil royalty for Sabah to 20 percent, so that the state government would have more money to develop the State.

Last Friday PR kicked off a nationwide road-show, led by Kelantan senior executive councillor Husam Musa and Tengku Razaleigh to explain the controversial oil royalty issue.

Husam said the road-show will seek a referendum on PR's proposal to give oil-producing states -- Sabah, Sarawak, Kelantan and Terengganu -- 15 percent of oil royalties when it comes into federal power.

He said the decision to include Sabah and Sarawak in the referendum was in recognition of the goodwill and understanding that dated back to Sarawak’s first oil find.

“At the beginning, Sarawak was to have received 12 percent in oil royalties. But because Petronas was still a fledgling company at the time, a compromise was struck.

"Petronas agreed to give both Sabah and Sarawak five percent in royalties. The aim was to help Petronas consolidate its financials. But this goodwill gesture was eventually buried," Husam reportedly said.

by FMT

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