Wednesday, May 26, 2010


12 Jamadil Akhir 1431 H
Oleh: Brigadier General (R) Dato Muhammad Arshad.

The speed at which PM Najib concluded a deal with his Singapore counterpart over the proposed relocation of KTMB's train terminal at Tanjung Pagar to Woodlands is baffling. Once again, Malaysia have lost a historical landmark that has been ours since the colonial days, just by a stroke of a pen. Earlier it was the RMAF Sg. Besi airbase, and a few months ago, it was Pulau Batu Putih. What else is going for sale or lost, is any one's guess.

I do not know what all it takes for PM Najib to strike such a hasty deal with his Singapore counterpart. But as an ordinary citizen, I am terribly concern that this all important issue, i.e. the question of the nation's sovereignty is given a backseat. Nations go to war over their rights to retain land, and in the example of KTMB land deal, it seems a cup of tea was all it takes to conclude an agreement. Malaysians are totally ignorant as to how the deal was made, and by saying that Khazanah owns 60% of the deal in the future development of KTMB land is not enough to satisfy every right thinking Malaysians. The least PM Najib could have done was to raise this issue in Parliament.

Former PM Tun Dr. Mahathir had once remarked that it is not easy to negotiate and to strike a deal with the Singapore government, that is to our advantage. But in the case of PM Najib, it wasn't that difficult at all. What is so lacking in Tun Dr. Mahathir that he had so often failed in his dealings with his Singapore counterpart. And what is so obviously easy for PM Najib to appease his counterpart to accept an agreement, that has for years been kept in abeyance.

I know for sure that officials of the Singapore government are not dumb and stupid. They are the best crop of the nation, and it is not so easy to hoodwink them. They do not have people like Bung Mukhtar, or for that matter, the likes of Nazri Aziz as lawmakers. Each an everyone of them are scholars, and I think PM Najib knows this.

My only hope is that PM Najib does not get hoodwink by his Singapore counterpart in this KTMB land deal, and that the agreement reached is in the best interest for both Malaysia and Singapore.


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