Wrong info instils fear
I WISH to share my experience at a fellowship dinner organised by
the Malaysia Senior Scientists Association and the Rotary Club at
the Royal Selangor Club (RSC) at Dataran Merdeka on Dec 16.
I like to commend the organisers for inviting a guest speaker to
the dinner to talk about the Lynas project, a RM2.3bil project
which is strongly opposed by a group of residents in Kuantan.
I signed up for the dinner to know more about this issue, and hear
from the experts.
The guest speaker, a so-called expert from the anti-Lynas group,
talked about the danger of the Lynas Advanced Material Plant (LAMP)
at the Gebeng industrial area and it being a potential hazard for
Using clips from a dated video showing the Chernobyl nuclear
accident and experiments depicting its effects, the speaker opined
that no radiation level is safe and radiation will cause cancer,
thus the Lynas project is harmful.
The speaker claimed that Lynas had been given a pre-operational
licence and the project gave no benefits to the country.
He argued that the project was focused on monetary profits, without
taking into account the safety and well-being of the people. I told
myself that the speaker intended to evoke fear by presenting
incomplete and inaccurate information taken out of context, but I
was no expert to argue with him.
During the question-and-answer session, a professor, who introduced
himself as the radiological safety advisor at Lynas, corrected the
allegations made by the speaker.
He explained that Lynas had not yet received its pre-operational
licence from the Government.
True enough, he argued that the radiation effects in the video clip
on the Chernobyl incident were incomplete and taken out of context,
and had no contextual relevance to the Lynas project in
To my surprise, the speaker apologised to the audience for
misleading them and making false statements in his
Many in the audience were amazed by the facts and explanations
given by the professor.
Together with several unanswered questions raised by other members
of the audience to the speaker, this dinner talk made the audience
realise that they had not been getting the real facts and the full
picture of the project. I was one of them.
There are allegations made out of incomplete and misconstrued
These erroneous allegations are then used to influence others who
do not have sufficient knowledge on the matter to enable them to
make a fair conclusion.
Again, my appreciation to the Malaysia Senior Scientists
Association and the Rotary Club who organised the meaningful
The public should not be misled by parties who are out to instil
fear and unease.
Nicht von heute, aber noch immer aktuell.