KUALA LUMPUR, April 6 — Lim Guan Eng today challenged the MCA to prove its anti-Lynas stand by withdrawing from Barisan Nasional (BN) and standing under its own banner in the coming polls.
The DAP secretary-general cast doubt over the MCA’s sincerity in calling for the Lynas rare earth plant to be scrapped, saying the party could again change its mind after the polls to support the project.
“Therefore this is a last chance for MCA to prove its commitment to scrap the Lynas plant by withdrawing from BN and standing under its own banner at the next general election,” Lim (picture) said in a statement.
“Would (MCA president Datuk Seri Dr) Chua (Soi Lek) dare to announce that MCA would only rejoin BN when the Lynas plant is closed down?
“Any failure to do so will allow Malaysians to decide whether to trust a party that not only deceives itself but tries to deceive others,” he added.
In a statement on Tuesday, Dr Chua urged the federal government to stop the Sydney-based Lynas Corporation from proceeding with its nearly-complete rare earth refinery in Gebeng, Kuantan.
The MCA president had reasoned that safety was no longer the only issue but that the government could no longer ignore the resounding calls from Malaysians for the plant to be scrapped.
But Lim said this could be an election ploy by the veteran MCA politician, pointing out that as long as Umno refuses to commit to compensating Lynas Corp, the latter’s proclamation would remain suspect.
Even the newly-formed Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) on Lynas was unlikely to recommend the plant’s shutdown, he noted.
“Worse, Chua continues to press for Lynas to send the radioactive rare earth waste out of the country back to Australia is ridiculous when Australia has publicly and officially rejected such requests,” Lim said.
Unlike BN, he said, the Australian government was unwilling to place the health and safety of Australians above huge profits.
“For MCA to suddenly flip-flop from its previous position, and now suddenly see the light by urging the BN to scrap the rare earth processing facility just before the 13th general election smacks of sheer opportunism, a desperate and unprincipled attempt to buy votes,” Lim said.