Remember my posting Najib's facts, principles, goose & gander.
I lamented that DPM Najib was more concerned about form than substance. He said the cabinet’s reprimand of Deputy Higher Education Ong Tee Keat (MCA) for alleging officials' misuse of funds meant for Chinese schools' refurbishment was a matter of ‘principle’ and that the ‘facts’ of Ong’s allegation was entirely a different matter, meaning he didn't want to 'touch' that with a 10-foot pole.
The cabinet reprimand came about after Education Minister Hishamuddin Tun Hussein had railed against Ong’s allegation. Hishamuddin had rejected Ong’s claim. Ong didn't budge but everything was swiftly galvanised into 'elegant silence'.
Well, the ‘fact’ that Najib wasn’t interested in (and we now know for ‘good reason’) was raised in parliament when Parliamentary Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timor) told Works Minister Samy Vellu that a Public Works Department official had actually admitted to Ong's allegation. The official said that the refurbishment works carried out on SJKC Kung Yu in Johor cost only about RM3,000 when the allocation was RM30,000.
In other words, the ‘facts’ of the missing 90% of funds, the alleged embezzlement of special funds meant to repair and upgrade schools, is still not explained - and which Hishamuddin had strenuously denied, and which DPM Najib had conveniently dismissed, undoubtedly as inconvenient 'fact' not involving cabinet 'principle' of ensuring an UMNO leader must never be embarrassed by a non-UMNO leader.
Apparently the works department official revealed all when Samy Vellu and MCA president Ong Ka Ting visited the school day yesterday. The ‘confession’, or rather ‘revelation', received prominent coverage in Chinese dailies today.
Lim said the official’s revelation proved what Deputy Higher Education Minister Ong Tee Keat had alleged.
Lim asked Samy Vellu: “Will you bring this up at tomorrow’s cabinet meeting and ask the Higher Education Minister (Mustapa Mohamed) to retract his apology which was made on behalf of his deputy to Education Minister Hishammuddin Hussein?”
Samy answered: “I have nothing to do with that. I am not going to answer.”
Lim persisted and asked what immediate actions are being carried out to avoid such problems in other schools.
Samy Vellu blew his top and said: “I don’t have a license to shoot or hang a person. The (public works) department will take action. I just asked for an investigation this morning ... how can you ask me on what I’m going to do?”
That's Samy's 'Must I Comment?'
The minister said he will wait for the outcome of the investigation into the Kung Yu school before deciding on the next move. He has also reportedly asked for documents, including notes of every material and their cost pertaining to the construction of the school.
Maybe this explains why Hishamuddin railed against Ong; maybe it explains Najib's ‘principle’ over ‘fact’?
Principle? I doubt that the cabinet will reprimand Hishamuddin and ask him to apologise to Ong.