Is RAPID an escalating problem?

Posted on March 23, 2012. Filed under: Environment and Livelihoods |

Another Lynas-Like project in the making in Pengerang, Johor?(Part 1)

Another Lynas-Like project in the making in Pengerang, Johor?(Part 2)

A briefing session to create public awareness on the adverse impact of the RAPID (Refinery and Petrolchemical Integrated Development) project was held in Pengerang,  a small fishing village situated at the south eastern part of Johor, here, recently.

The public session was organised by Johor Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).

PKR Johor State Deputy Chairman, Hassan Karim, a lawyer by profession, started off in explaining Article 13 of the federal constitution which guarantees the rights of Malaysians to own properties (house, car and land) which cannot be ‘confiscated’ at will by the government except through proper legal means.

Then he went on to elaborate Section 3 of the Land Acquisition Act 1960 which allows the government to acquire land needed for development specifically for public interest.

He added, even if the government invoke the said Act, the government will need to fulfill and comply strictly with the procedures as stipulated in the Land Acquisition Act 1960.

However, Hassan reiterated and said, the affected parties particularly land owners can have the legal recourse to challenge the forced acquisition in court if there is evident to proof that the forced land acquisition exercise is mala-fadie.

“The people are not against development but it should not be at the large expense of the people”, he said.

Hassan alleged that several UMNO cronies will benefit substantially from the RAPID project and he went on to named the cronies which include Kencana Petroleum Bhd, Dialog Group Berhad, Sapura Crest Petroleum Bhd and Tebrau Teguh Bhd.

He cited an example where Tebrau Teguh Bhd has been awarded a RM500 million negotiated contract to relocate the affected residents to distant location named Punggai.


The Rapid (Refinery And Petrochemical Integrated Development) project is aimed at building something “larger than Kertih”, and will eventually include multinational oil and gas companies as joint-venture partners.

The integrated development will include oil refining and petrochemical activities, as well as  a gas power plant and other “supportive industries” said sources.

The waters in Pengerang was found ideal, because it can reach depths of more than 20m, a requirement for very large crude carriers (VLCC) and ultra large crude carriers.

The terminal will be a tankage facility for handling, storing, blending and distribution of crude oils and petroleum products with marine facilities capable of handling VLCCs.

Last November, the Government said Petronas would play a major role in the development of Johor’s south-east areas of Teluk Ramunia and Pengerang into an O&G hub in the region.

Pakatan Rakyat had a dialogue with the residents of Pengerang over the RM60.6 billion Refinery and Petroleum Integrated Development (RAPID) project in Pengerang, Johor.

The project involves 22,500 acres of land area to be acquired by the government.

That includes acquiring 18 burial sites (11 Muslim burial sites and 7 non Muslim), 11 surau, 6 mosques, 3 temples, 3 Chinese medium schools, 5 national schools and 5 Islamic religious schools besides the affected dwelling places of the residents.

The refinery is expected to operate by the end of 2016.  It has the capacity to process 300,000 barrels of crude oil a day, to produce into petroleum products such as petrol, jet fuel and diesel.

National petroleum company, PETRONAS, a GLC, will be looking for strategic partners to participate in this bold venture.

According to Hassan Karim (PKR Deputy Chief), contracting companies like Dialog Group Bhd, Kencana Petroleum and KNM Group Bhd, who enjoyed strong ties with UMNO, will benefit significantly from the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of the proposed RAPID project.

Datuk Chua Jui Meng, Johor PKR Chief, went to great length to emphasize the environmental and health impact on local residents.

The mission tons of sulphur dioxide and other poisonous gas into the air daily will cause acid rain pollution on the sea and land.

Prolong inhalation of polluted air causes nose, colon cancer and leukemia, as evidenced by 26 refinery personnel suffering from one of cancerous diseases in a refinery in Singapore.  These personnel had worked in the refinery plant for 15 years and 20 have since died of cancer.


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