Release all agreements: Repeal the OSA and implement a Freedom of Information Act

We, the undersigned members of the National Coalition for a Freedom of Information Act, call upon the Government to release all agreements between itself and highway concessionaires and to drop the summonses against Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, Ronnie Liu Tian Khiew, Dr. Hatta Ramli, and Chua Tian Chiang for releasing one of these agreements.

There has been widespread public discontent about recent toll price hikes, as seen in numerous demonstrations and letters published in the media. Despite calls on the Government to live up to its promises of transparency and accountability, there have been no moves to release the agreements between concessionaires and the Government. The Government has said, however, that it is bound to not only allow the concessionaires to raise toll prices, but also to pay compensation to them. The public have the right to know what agreements have been made in their name, and what costs they will have to bear as a result of these agreements.

If the agreements were made in the public interest, the Government should be willing to disclose the agreements. If they were not made in the public interest, the Government should disclose them and make an undertaking to ensure that the lack of transparency and openness that led to these agreements will not be repeated. It is only by re-negotiating the agreements in the public interest and by exposing them to public scrutiny that the Government will be able to ensure it retains public trust and confidence.

The Coalition calls upon the Government to make the charges null and void by releasing these documents, and all others related to agreements with highway concessionaires. It further demands the repeal of the Official Secrets Act 1972 and the implementation of a Freedom of Information Act, in accordance with both Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international best practice.

Note: The four are being summoned for police investigation under the Official Secrets Act 1972 and have been asked to appear at the Bukit Aman Police Headquarters at 10 am on Monday, 5 February.

Released by:

Sonia Randhawa
Executive Director
Centre for Independent Journalism

For more information, please contact Hwa Yi Xing at 017 671 7847.

Endorsed by:

  • Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ)
  • Charter 2000-Aliran
  • Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
  • The Coalition Against Water Privatisation (CAWP)
  • Group of Concerned Citizens (GCC)
  • Monitoring Sustainability of Globalisation
  • Pertubuhan Jamaah Islah Malaysia
  • Writer’s Alliance for Media Independence (WAMI)
  • Malaysia Youth and Student Democratic Movement (DEMA)
  • Pusat Komunikasi Masyarakat (KOMAS)