Fuziah the earliest to oppose Lynas
KUANTAN: The Lynas rare earth refinery was a major issue used by the then opposition pact Pakatan Rakyat in the run-up to the 13th General Election (GE13), especially in Pahang.
Then PKR candidate Fuziah Salleh, who won the Kuantan parliamentary seat during polling on May 5, 2013, was a vocal critic against the rare earth refinery in Gebeng here.
Her hard-line stance made her one of the earliest members of parliament to oppose the plant since she won the Kuantan parliamentary seat in the 12th General Election in 2008.
She spearheaded a longstanding anti-Lynas campaign, which saw the formation of the group “Save Malaysia, Stop Lynas” in 2011. The group was involved in a series of anti-Lynas rallies from 2011 to January 2013.
On March 15, 2013, Fuziah, who was also then PKR vicepresident, reportedly have said Pakatan Rakyat would shut down Lynas Malaysia Sdn Bhd if it wrested power in GE13.
Ironically, her stance went against then opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who had told the Sydney Morning Herald that the Lynas plant would be allowed to operate if it was found to be safe.
On Feb 4, 2013, environmentalist Wong Tack was reported by Chinese dailies as threatening to burn down the Lynas plant if it was not closed after polls on May 5.
His alleged threat came after his announcement on Jan 30, 2013, that Himpunan Hijau, the environmental group he headed, would campaign against Barisan Nasional in GE13 to stop Lynas operations. About a week later, Wong was chosen as DAP’s candidate in Bentong, pitted against incumbent Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, who is also transport minister and MCA president.
Even earlier, during a speech, now available on YouTube, dated March 4, 2012, Penang Chief Minister and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng was heard describing the Lynas plant as a “nuclear plant”.