No pledge from gov't to lessen toll in next five years

4:53PM Jul 10, 2013

PARLIAMENT The federal government is giving no commitment to reduce highway tolls in the next five years, despite dishing this as a pledge in the BN's manifesto for the recent 13th general election.

This was revealed in a parliamentary written answer from Works Minister Fadillah Yusof to Hee Loy Sian (PKR-Petaling Jaya Selatan, left), who asked the minister to state the plans to reduce or abolish toll plazas in the next five years.

However no plan or proposal was given in the reply, except to explain the difficulties faced by the government.

"The proposal to reduce or restructure the country's highway tolls require agreement from both sides, the government and the concessionaires involved, because the government and the concessionaires are bound by the obligations agreed to in the original concession agreements.

"Hence any negotiation by the government to reduce the toll rates needs to be done carefully, without disturbing market sentiments and the confidence of local and foreign investors," the minister said.

Fadillah then recounted the government's initiatives to restructure and abolish tolls from 2011 to 2013.

"For other highways, the restructuring negotiations are being and will be held on a case by case basis," he added.
'BN manifesto was just to win election'

BN promised a "gradual reduction of intra-city tolls" in its 2013 general election manifesto.

Hee, in responding to the reply outside Parliament, said the answer clearly showed that BN has no intention to realise its election promise.

"The written reply has revealed that the prime minister and his campaign team were desperate about drafting their manifesto to win the general election.

"A manifesto must be logical and feasible, not created hastily and then become an empty promise," Hee added.

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