A transparent LRT crash probe vital


THE government needs to take full responsibility for the light rail transit (LRT) train crash and provide the public with a clear explanation over the accident.

Petaling Jaya MP Maria Chin Abdullah said the removal of Pasir Salak MP Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman as the train operator’s chairman, while welcomed, would not solve the crux of the matter.

She said an investigation committee independent of the Ministry of Transport needs to be formed even though a task force for this aim had been announced by Minister of Transport Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.

“To avoid such accidents from happening again, the people must be assured that there will be a thorough inquiry into the accident. There must be another independent committee to ensure transparency and accountability.

“As Prasarana Malaysia Bhd is a public-owned company, the inquiry must adhere to principles of justice, rule of law and to the peoples’ right to know the truth,” Maria Chin said in a statement yesterday.

Maria Chin said the composition of the committee must include renowned experts in transportation, as well as legal and other technical experts.

“The public demand for answers. It affects the livelihoods of the hardworking people on the ground who depend on public transportation. Their lives matter and must be our paramount concern,” she said, adding that the investigation paper should not be classified under the Official Secrets Act.

Wee had established a task force to investigate the accident, led by the ministry’s secretary general Datuk Isham Ishak.

Meanwhile in a separate statement, Kepong MP Lim Lip Eng said the 213 passengers on board the train would want a fair investigation to be conducted, including details of what happened before and during the accident.

Lim said a thorough investigation would necessitate both Prasarana and the government to release CCTV (closed-circuit TV) video footage recorded before and during the collision, especially video footage inside the train driver’s cabins and the control centre.

“There is no valid excuse for not showing the public what had led to the collision, in particular, the 213 passengers deserve to know the truth of their mishaps. The video recording would provide answers to what had transpired before and during the crash.

“Such drastic action has to be taken in the interest of transparency and good corporate governance to prevent any undesirable hindrances in the event that an investigation is being carried out.”

Additionally, he said both the prime minister and transport minister should also explain why authorities have failed to suspend the senior management staff who could either be directly or indirectly responsible for the accident.