PETALING JAYA: A federal minister has come to Putrajaya’s defence after PKR president Anwar Ibrahim urged the government to review its decision to renew Lynas Malaysia’s operating licence.
Entrepreneur Development Minister Redzuan Yusof said Anwar, who is Pakatan Harapan’s designated successor to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, should not evaluate the government’s decision based on emotions.
“The Cabinet’s decision on Lynas was an informed one, based on local and international expert opinions including the United Nation’s International Atomic Energy Agency. And their opinions are grounded in scientific facts not baseless claims,” he told FMT.
Redzuan said Anwar should remember that Cabinet decisions were made based on consensus and that some of the Cabinet members were PKR leaders.
“Decisions made by consensus should be respected, after all, consensus is what Pakatan Harapan is committed to.”
Cabinet ministers, he added, should not take exception to decisions agreed upon as this was part and parcel of collective responsibility.
Anwar, he added, should be sending out a message that the government would be consistent in its policies.
“He must give confidence to investors that the government will not flip flop on policies regardless of who is PM.
“His action of asking Tun to review the Cabinet’s decision on Lynas will have a negative impact on the economy.”
On Tuesday, Anwar appeared to question Putrajaya’s move to renew the licence for the Lynas rare earths plant in Kuantan by six months, and called for a review of the decision.
“It should be done amicably with meaningful and effective negotiations,” he told reporters after a meeting of party leaders.
Mahathir has defended the decision to allow Lynas to operate, despite protests from activists and some of his own Cabinet members.
On Aug 15, the Atomic Energy Licensing Board (AELB) agreed to renew Lynas’ licence by six months subject to several conditions, including the construction of a “cracking and leaching” facility abroad.
The company was also told to identify a permanent disposal facility (PDF) that is approved by the relevant state government.