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Parliament  becomes “House of Leaks” – why didn’t Samy Vellu, who prides being a architect, foresaw  the “very bad” condition of Parliament roof in his very dramatic inspection two years ago when Parliament first leaked after RM90 million renovation?


Media Conference (2)      
by Lim Kit Siang  


(Petaling Jaya, Friday) : New Straits Times front-page the latest scandal of Parliament as “HOUSE OF LEAKS” – barely two years after spending RM90 million to renovate Parliament House. 

Works Minister, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, after a dramatic 45-minute inspection yesterday, said about the condition of the roof of Parliament House:  

 As an architect, I can tell you it is very bad. I don’t want to hide anything from you. There is a lot of work to be done here," he said at a press conference in the lobby of parliament.

He said the repairs would involve removing concrete slabs, waterproofing the roof and installing concealed ceiling equipment for heat protection.

"The plastic pipes will have to be replaced with class-A cast iron pipes." The damaged pipes had resulted in water not flowing off the roof.

Samy Vellu said there was a pile of rubbish, mainly construction waste, on the roof and this had to be removed.

He said there were leaks in five places.

"These could increase to 10 or 15 in the future if nothing is done now."

Who is at fault? 

Samy Vellu said everyone was to be blamed for the leakage. 

NST reported: 

"The Public Works Department is in charge of public buildings. They should have acted and advised the government to carry out repairs.

"The parliament maintenance crew also appears to have been negligent."

He said a paper on the maintenance work and repair costs would be submitted to the cabinet.

"After this repairs, I want to make sure there will be no more such complaints for the next 20 or 30 years." 

However one party is conspicuously  absent from the list of those who should be blamed for Parliament earning a new infamy of “House of Leaks” – Samy Vellu himself. 

Why didn’t Samy Vellu, who prides being an architect, foresaw  the “very bad” condition of Parliament roof in his very dramatic inspection two years ago when Parliament first leaked after RM90 million renovation? 

I don’t have to say that in developed countries, Samy Vellu would have already “sacked” himself, if the Prime Minister had not done so earlier, after such a catalogue of defective structures in government buildings and public construction projects. 

Why isn’t Parliament renovation under purview of the House Standing Committee which had been formed with the specific  responsibility of overseeing “all matters connected with the comfort and convenience and services and amenities available” to MPs?  What is more basic to the comfort and convenience of MPs than a Parliament which does not become a House of Leaks after a RM90 million renovation two years ago? 

And what is the cost for the repair of the Parliament renovation and who is going to bear it?  Again the public as the eternal suckers?


* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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