Free Malaysia Today – “Radioactive ore to reach Kuantan this month”

Tarani Palani

October 13, 2011


PKR MP Fuziah Salleh says that the raw material will arrive in Kuantan from Australia by the end of the month. Not true, rebuts Lynas.

KUALA LUMPUR: Kuantan MP Fuziah Salleh today raised the alarm bells again on the controversial Lynas plant.

The PKR leader revealed that the radioactive ore from Mount Weld is scheduled to reach Malaysia by the end of this month despite public outcry against the project and many unresolved safety issues.

The rare earth processing plant in Gebeng, Pahang, using raw materials sourced from the Mount Weld mine in Australia, would produce rare earth products essential for making hi-tech gadgets.

From the mine, the raw materials are taken to a concentration plant within the site and processed into concentrates before being shipped from the Port of Fremantle to Malaysia to be processed into rare earth products in the Gebeng plant.

At a press conference in Parliament today, Fuziah revealed that despite the large-scale protest, there appeared to be no action taken to stall the project.

Fuziah said she received a report stating that the raw material from Mount Weld would arrive in Kuantan by the end of this month.

“This matter was mentioned by the Kuantan Port Authorities in the monthly Health Safety and Environment Committee (HSE) meeting between the Kuantan Port Consortium and the land occupants of the Kuantan Port area, held in Kuantan last week,” she added.

The shipping of the raw material comes amidst numerous pending issues regarding the project, one of them being the 11 recommendations made in the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s assessment report of the project.

Fuziah today highlighted one of the 11 recommendations, which was a long-term waste management plan.

Malaysia’s Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) was reported to have said that it had received Lynas’ long-term waste management plan but had yet to analyse it.

“The plan will not be made public as I do not consider it submitted until we make sure it is in accordance with international standards,” AELB director-general Abdul Aziz Raja Adnan was quoted as saying.

Lynas threatens to sue

Fuziah called upon Lynas to be “more responsible, accountable and transparent to the public of Kuantan and the greater public of Malaysia”.

She also called on Lynas not to act as though “this (was their) father’s country”.

Fuziah also revealed that Lynas had threatened to sue her for defamation for filling a report with the Australian Securities Commission.

Her lawyer R Sivarasa, who was also present at the press conference, said that Lynas was behaving like a typical corporate bully.

“They picked the wrong target. Stop your bullying techniques. If you want to meet us in court we will meet you in court as the truth is on our side,” he said.

Lynas: Not true

Lynas meanwhile said that Fuziah was wrong in stating that Lynas was about to bring rare earth ore to Kuantan later this month.

“Her statements are factually inaccurate and misleading, and Lynas needs to clarify this.

“Lynas has no intention to export any rare earth ore to Kuantan and under no circumstance would do so without the requisite approvals, in this case the pre-operational licence for the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant (LAMP),” said Lynas Malaysia Sdn Bhd MD Mashal Ahmad in a statement.

He said that Fuziah’s allegation was factually incorrect, ill informed, misleading and damaging to Lynas and the regulators.

“The MPs latest claim casts doubt on her integrity,” added Mashal.

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