Bersatu supreme council member Wan Saiful Wan Jan has expressed regret that his allies in Pakatan Harapan component parties have opposed Lynas for “ideological” reasons.
He echoed Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s statement that the government should abide by experts’ recommendations, which has resulted in a six-month licence extension for the company’s rare-earth refinery in Gebeng, Kuantan.
He said this after leading a group of Bersatu leaders on a visit to the controversial factory.
“I organised this visit because the Lynas issue has been hotly debated. A few days ago, Mahathir said we should abide by the experts’ recommendations regarding Lynas, which has led to the an extension of Lynas’ licence.
“However, some component party partners have given views opposed to Mahathir’s solely for their ideological reasons. This is something I regret,” he said in a Facebook post today.
He said Mahathir, who is also the Bersatu chairperson, had wanted people to act according to facts in the Lynas controversy.
“The politics and policies of ‘New Malaysia’ should be based on accurate information. I hope this visit can help develop a culture of knowledge in politics,” he said.
Among those who accompanied him were fellow Bersatu supreme council members Akhramsyah Sanusi, Faiz Na’aman, and Wan Mohd Shahrir Wan Abdul Jalil, the latter of whom is also the Pahang Bersatu chief.
The government had announced its decision to extend Lynas’ licence on Aug 15, along with the imposition of more stringent conditions on its operations.
Among others, the company is required to move its cracking and leaching operations - which produce a low-grade radioactive waste - overseas within four years.
It is also required to identify a suitable site to build a permanent disposal facility for the radioactive waste that is already in the country, or alternative, secure permission from a foreign country willing to accept the waste products.