PETALING JAYA: MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong has questioned the Federal Government's silence on the US$42.2mil (RM175.8mil) received from Lynas Malaysia.
Lynas Malaysia managing director Datuk Mashal Ahmad said that the company had deposited US$42.2mil with the Federal Government to fund long-term residue management in a statement on Saturday (Aug 3).
Dr Wee is now questioning the government over its silence on the payment.
"Is it true that the government has received this payment and what is the purpose?" he asked in a Facebook post on Monday (Aug 5).
Dr Wee's statement comes as Opposition leaders want Pakatan Harapan MPs,who made pre-election promises to shut down the Lynas rare earth plant,to quit their posts or vacate their Parliament seats.
Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had said Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng,DAP’s Bentong MP Wong Tack and PKR’s Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh must take responsibility for the continued operations of the plant.
In May,Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Lynas would be allowed to continue to operate in the country despite the Energy,Science,Technology,Environment and Climate Change Ministry's insistence for Lynas to repatriate its radioactive waste back to Australia.
Recent reports indicate that the Cabinet has instructed Lynas to construct a permanent disposal factory (PDF) to treat the water leach purification residue that is created from rare earth processing at its facility in Gebeng,Kuantan.
On Saturday,Energy,Science,Technology,Environment and Climate Change Minister Yeo Bee Yin said the Cabinet will announce its decision on Lynas Malaysia’s licence renewal status by Aug 15.
Yeo said the government will also announce whether the rare earth producer has to repatriate its radioactive waste back to Australia.
She also indicated that the final decision may not be ideal but said that it is still better than the present situation.