KUALA LUMPUR: A DAP MP has urged the government to reveal the findings of a police investigation into the alleged RM207 billion compensation paid by the Japanese government to Malaysia for the loss of lives in the construction of the infamous “Death Railway” during World War II.
M Kula Segaran (PH-Ipoh Barat) had asked the finance ministry yesterday to explain the status of the payment, following claims that victims and their next of kin have not received the compensation.
Today, Kula told the Dewan Rakyat he has received a written reply from the ministry saying it has issued two official statements, on Jan 15 and 19 of 2013, refuting the “false claim”.
The ministry also said a police report had been lodged over the matter in September 2012 for further investigation.
“From 2012 until now, it has been about 11 years, surely there was an outcome from the police investigation. Why was the outcome not revealed?
“I hope the ministry can give a comprehensive answer for this matter so that the issue can be resolved once and for all,” said Kula.
The ministry also said it has requested for the issue of the compensation from the Japanese government not to be raised in the Dewan Rakyat again.
In response, Kula said it is the right of the people to raise any issues in the Dewan Rakyat in accordance with the law and rules of Parliament.
In recent years, the mainstream and social media had reported claims that the Japanese government had paid Malaysia the RM207 billion in the 1990s, when Dr Mahathir Mohamad was prime minister.
However, in a TV interview with the Tamil news site Vanakkam Malaysia on May 23, Mahathir denied receiving any compensation on behalf of the Malaysian victims or their families, as suggested.
Ten years earlier, Anwar Ibrahim, then the opposition leader, claimed that both Japanese and Malaysian officials were in possession of “evidence” that the money was sent to the government but did not go through the Treasury.
He said he was sure of this since he was the finance minister then.
It is estimated that 30,000 Malaysians who were forcefully recruited to build the Thai-Burma “Death Railway” died.