Sunday, February 01, 2009

Labu Shelved

Updated, 2pm Feb 1:-
1. "I will always thank him for allowing me to fly to Balikpapan, a destination on our SEAsian map that I always wanted to visit but MAS does not fly there ... but I hope ...". -Pasquale in Hope Tony is not like Luncai ....
2. "Nothing is more sickenings than an Airliner who operates a business emulating a pirated DVD operator, and bragging his blog's high hits as indicative of his popularity." - A Voice [here].

Original posting:
I'm happy that Tony Fernandes is happy with the outcome of his meeting with Najib and Nor Mohamed Yakcop on Friday. I told Astro Awani in a phone interview for that night's 9pm news that the decision to shelve the Labu LCCT project was wajar. Air Asia should focus on its forte, which is to fly passengers. It should now work closely with MAHB and the other industry players to realize the nation's aviation potential.

In my last phone conversation with Tony, he said Labu was a do-or-die thing for Air Asia. I didn't buy that and I told Tony so. I've watched how Tony grew the airline and fought the bullies back when he was the underdog. This guy can still do it. In fact, I believe he'll do it better without having to contend with Labu.[I can't say the same for Sime Darby, which is Air Asia's partner in the Labu project]. I think Tony will do it even much better if he knows how to get rid of the hangers-on.

I can't tell how badly my friendship with Tony has suffered because of the blog campaign I helped initiate against the Labu LCCT issue. I hope it's not beyond repair.

Bloggers against Labu included:
Op-Ed - Air Asia to build LCCT in KLIA - Meeting just ended
Sime Darby Watch - Najib not in favor of KLIA@East
Wee Choo Keong - KLIA@East at Labu shelved for good?
Apanama - Bye-Bye Labu, Thank You Najib
Ashraf Abdullah - Najib says "NO" to KLIA@East
Nuraina Samad - Najib not in favour of Labu LCCT
and - Labu Airport Again

Read also:
OutSyed The Box's LCCT ditolak vs Decision on LCCT soon
Ancient Mariner's On-Off KLIA East

p.s. Sime Darby Watch's "mouse trap" logo stays on this blog until the Cabinet next week confirms the decision to shelve Labu. This is, after all, still very much a flip-flop Administration. The logo above is the version preferred by Jeff Ooi.


  1. Anonymous3:55 am

    Rocky is now Public Enemy No 1 in Air Asia. My friends in Air Asia say Rocky has sold himself to Umno's extreme right.

  2. Anonymous6:34 am

    actually, you have tried very hard not to hit Tony below the tummy.I dont think your relationship with Tony has been affected. Tony is smart enough...he would have read the Rocky vs Haris posting.

    Lionel Mothbalis

  3. Anonymous9:51 am

    Dear Rocky

    "I can't tell how badly my friendship with Tony has suffered because of the blog campaign I helped initiate against the Labu LCCT issue. I hope it's not beyond repair".



  4. Anonymous10:21 am

    The public (rakyat) is neglecting some very crucial issues that they should be pondering about in this case:

    1) How was the change in decisionmaking (from 'approved' to 'shelved') made? What are the reasons? Was the decision made on sound cost-benefit analysis, and if yes, where are the details of it for public consumption?

    2) What does this change in policy within a span of one month indicate, especially in terms of political "power play"? Do the decline in the power of one group of politicians and the ascent of another group of politicians play a role in how the decision is made (e.g., the rejection of projects that favour the cronies of one group than the other)? How badly do political interests affect the soundness of public policymaking, i.e., how is the public's interest damaged, or is the public's interest not the main concern at all?

    3) Why was there no open discussions about the fundamentals of the LCCT projects, .e.g, what is the origin and status of the land that was to be used for the project? Was it public/state land that was given away to a government-linked corporation (for private oil palm production) which then is to be developed for private gain (aircraft terminal) at the expense of public benefit since the land belongs to the people be getting rent in return for use of this land by private enterprises, regardless of whether or not whether the private enterprise benefits consumers or not)?

    The public should not lose sight of these issues as the mainstream media and blogs sensationalise the superficial intrigue involving MAHB and Air Asia.

  5. Anonymous11:43 am


    The rest of us never really believed that you acted on a matter of principle. You acted simply because of the old Mamakthir. Once he said that he was against Labu, what choice did you have ? Your hero made his stand, and you followed faithfully.

    Jangan cuba bohong orang lain lah, bro. Your debt to Mamakthir is far greater than your so-called friendship with Tony F.


  6. Anonymous12:14 pm

    Who cares really about relationships lost.
    Whats important is if Malaysians have lost an important opportunity to have a good LCCT in Labu and if such an opportunity was lost becaouse of all this unnecessary interference by way of politicians with self interests/no vision/narrow vision/not so Malaysian vision or bloggers who think they are so important that they have to bring out such matters for public discussion and banter it to the hilltop and all for nobodys future good.
    If really Labu was a good future planout for Malaysia's total aviation industry then all i can say is that we have now MISSED this chance unlike other countries who might have thought it out differently and wisely.
    Miss Clarity Clear.

  7. Anonymous12:29 pm

    Rocky, you mention about your friendship with Tony. Just like the incident with Haris, friendship may need to take a backseat when certain principles are involved. And if Tony does not get to forgive your report and the outburst from the public, then maybe we can reconsider his sincerity when it matters most. If you opt for eternal friendship irregardless of the storm and the foul weather, stay away from blogging. Meanwhile, I'd say you are doing a fairly good job. Do not deviate from your tracks. We are all watching closely.

  8. Anonymous1:03 pm

    Rocky acted based on principles??

    You must be kidding.

    He is just doing what he usually does -- to play along with Mahathir's dictates and ideas.

    Simple as that. Even if it means going back on what 'principles' he held onto in the past.

    So it is pretty 'lame' and quite funny for Anonymous 9:51 (Jayaputra) to say Rocky has defended his 'principles'.

  9. Anonymous1:21 pm


    Kenapa tak komen atau mengkritik usaha Barisan Nasional sekarang untuk menarik dua ADUN PKR masuk BN?

    Bila ADUN BN masuk PR, salah, tapi bila ADUN PR masuk BN, okey ker??

    Sampai perdana menteri pun dah masuk cakap dia mahukan 'perlompatan' ADUN PKR ni masuk ke BN:

    "Umno president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi also added to the intrigue by saying that "God-willing" there would be some defections from the Pakatan Rakyat in Perak to the Barisan Nasional."

    Dari The Malaysian Insider.

  10. Anonymous1:25 pm


    I am glad that the debate is over after the intervention of our DPM who is also up and coming the PM of Malaysia.
    As a senior citizen,I must say that it is a wise decision because we have all the facilities at KLIA to serve the needs of more aircrafts.Besides,we need to consider other factors like risks,safety and environment,not forgetting the loss of one GLC estate which is a food industry.
    There is so much confrontation here and in Indonesia from NGO's and the like towards the oil palm industry especially on the development of food crop from the greenland.The best option is to keep what we have instead of losing them and in this case we should not lose another oil palm estate.
    If this goes unchecked,Malaysia will in future have to import palm oil,just as we are importing rice.
    And dont cry foul if we have to pay a higher price for our cooking oil etc.
    Any development should be done in tandem and under no circumstances should we lose sight of our daily essential need which is food. We have already lost so many estates and rice fields....what's next. Its not that I am not supportive towards development but in any case it must be done in tandem.

    Think about it ya !

    (senior citizen)

  11. Anonymous1:54 pm

    1. The bloody Minister Of Transport said the final decision is in 2-3 weeks time. SO, is this case close or is it not. Why is this idiot not giving a firm confirmation. Or is he trying to save hos ugly face. Or is he trying another trick.

    2.Tony Fernandez must learn that raw ugly capitalism is not wanted in this country. He cannot be allowed to do what Tony want, if that is not in the interest of the common good.

    I cannot forget his disgusting remarks about Air Asain Malaysian
    customers, (yes customers and not fools). That is how Tony see us - as fools.

  12. Anonymous2:01 pm

    saw a clip, when air asia did their opening for KL London route; tony said:-

    'this is red card for malaysia airlines - they are history'

    why should he do that? snobbish businessman izzit?

  13. Anonymous3:01 pm

    The total different headlines betweeen Utusan and the Star

    The Star is trying to buy time for Air Asia cause Star is owned by MCA, previously there is a Minister for Air Asia there. I guess succession and continuity:) when OTK comment on that way. The Star is under full control of OTK with the recent appointment of OTK's konco konco at the top level.

  14. Anonymous3:24 pm

    Dear Rcoky.

    If what nstman said is true, you may nit be ab to buy a cheap Air Asia ticket again.

    But again, Mas and Fifirely is getting cheaper than Air Asia. No big loss.

  15. Anonymous3:24 pm

    WHO advised Sime and AirAsia on PR that led to such a disaster? Fox Communications?

    If I am the boss of Sime and AirAsia, I would fire my PR officers and sack my outside PR firms; Fox nor Fox...

    They bring shame to Sime and AirAsia and caused huge, huge problem for the government.

    Even MSM like NSTP which has been rooting for Sime and AirAsia could not help.

    The Kalli's gang still holds sway in the NSTP.

    Najib must kick them out or dispatch them to clod storage if he wants to survive and save the NSTP.

    Cheers Bro.

    Fine Wine

  16. Anonymous3:28 pm

    for those who said that you act simply because Tun M said so probably they just forget your relationship win Tun even help the judge on his memoir..
    so guys,why rocky stay close with tun salleh even thouh every man on earth know what happened between those two Tuns.


  17. Anonymous4:10 pm

    AirAsia like SimeDarby, they both like Labu & Labi in P.Ramlee famous film namely Nasib Labu Labi. "While very ambitious, they were both fighting to fulfill their desire while dreaming during sleeping and achieve nothing".

    Everyone now can fly now everyone don't fly AirAsia. Their morally greedy and illogical proposed Labu has now flying through the mind of every Malaysian.

    AirAsia, don't you realise that your proposed Labu could damaging Malaysia to be an aviation industry hub target in the long future.

    In fact, AirAsia does not have any single solid concrete reason for the proposed Labu except exposing its own greed.


  18. Anonymous5:21 pm

    Rocky has turned lah. He wanted to be close to people like Tun Salleh and Jeff Ooi, but now he thinks that Mamakthir is going to make a comeback under Najib, so Rocky is now pushing the Mamakthir agenda.

    Maybe the old Mamakthir will push for the cancellation of the legal case between Rocky and the NST once Mamakthir returns to UMNO after March.


  19. Rocky,
    At this stage of your blogging, you cannot hide behind this facade of yours of being an objective journalist.

    Your leanings and reports are clear for all to see - you are a Mahathirist at heart.

    So why don't you make the necessary declaration so that we don't have to fart around on this subject anymore.

  20. Anonymous9:44 pm

    Leave Tony the cry baby alone. He can sulk all he wants. Reality is that he will get his way. Wait another couple of years then tax payers will need to bail airasia out. Go ask the bankers. Air Asia with its overleveraged balance sheet is not bankable anymore. All the international banks that are supposed to back him are either broke or will soon be. Let's just hope airbus goes bust then perhaps he will be lucky and he can sue them to get some compensation. I just cant wait to see airasia's full year results coming out this month.


  21. So far..Rocky is proving .he is putting country's interest above personal benefits.
    It's not easy...when you are influential.
    It is whether he will sell his services to the highest bidder in politics....that is left to be seen.
    He is totally different from Haris and his own business and is working as a journalist.
    Above all..he had a foundation of a successful man in news matters.
    I doubt he will sell himself.
    He has a mind of his own....and one feeling grateful does not mean...he is pro M.

  22. So many suspecting Rocky is an politics.
    But so far ........he stayed put...answering to no one.
    Do not forget...he has his own printing business and is a freelance reporter.
    Such a busy man...where got time to cay balls??

  23. Anonymous10:04 pm

    I thought that we have given up on this GO then STOP and LOOK syndrome. We start a project then we stop the project and then we begin the feasibility study.

  24. Anonymous10:06 pm

    I thought that we have given up on this GO then STOP and LOOK syndrome. We start a project then we stop the project and make a feasibility study.Ramalx

  25. rocky,

    I like tony too and i disagree with the airport plan. but don't worry cos I think Tony knew what he was doing. He comes out winner even iof the airport is canceled cosMAHb has been told to sit down and sort it out.

    lets be frank, we need AA. Low fares and one of the few things we Malaysians can be proud of. we need winners and AA is one for sure right now. we need to continue to support them.

    That said my friend, I do sense that you have skewed your views to Dr.M side but hey thats your choice. At least you are not censoring your blog like Dr.M's and we can still engage with you.

  26. Anonymous12:40 am

    nstman said...

    Rocky is now Public Enemy No 1 in Air Asia. My friends in Air Asia say Rocky has sold himself to Umno's extreme right.

    3:55 AM


    Apelah kamu ni, suka tuduh Rocky macam tu?

    Suka hati dia lah nak condong ke mana. Ke kanan ke ke kiri ke, ini blog dia. Dia kan dah terangkan pendirian dia, bacalah lagi oi. Kamu tu tetamu dia, kalau tak suka boleh blah!

    Pi lah masuk blog RPK - MT tu. Blog yg dikhaskan hentam Melayu! Atau pi masuk blog Al-jub tu!

    Kamu ni memandai kata Rocky ni 'Public Enemy No 1 in Air Asia'. Dan kata 'My friends in Air Asia say Rocky has sold himself to Umno'.

    Woi nstman, ada bukti ke?
    Dah pandai nak menipu ke?
    Patut le kamu kena tendang dari NST dulu.

    -tukang perati

  27. Anonymous1:47 pm

    nstman tu kawan tony. Modal takda itu sebab beri komen macam tu. Sebenarnya tony yang flip flop - hanging on to the coattails of KJ kejap, kali kejap, pahamin rejab sekejap tunggu mana melekat. dulu Chan Kon Choi dia boleh makan. Sekarang kerja keras pulak nak bodek ong tee kiat. boleh belah lah. What tony needs to do is stay focus on his initial objective of providing the public with affordable costs of flying but now his mission has changed. He is out to prove that he is the only smart guy and everyone else is an idiot. I wonder whether malaysia will have its own satyam soon.


  28. DVD semmillan. Available on airasia flights. Now everyone can watch DVDs!

  29. Anonymous10:08 am

    Dear Rocky,

    I salute Air Asia's corporate warriors for turning the airline into Asia No 1 LCC. Folks look at Time dot Com (TdC), government gave TdC GSM and 3G licences, TdC sold the licences for quick bucks. Nih budak-budak tua Malay College punya hal lah nih. No telcos company in the world with mobile operating licence making losses except in Malaysia. So TdC still need the crutches till today.

    Y.B Hisham Gemuk

  30. Anonymous10:51 am

    Capt., the threat is over. KLIA East@Labu is no more.

  31. Anonymous10:54 am

    Well done, Spock, MAHB and KLIA is saved. Let's get down to earth now and head for home for a good rest. Who knows, maybe on the way we will encounter another exciting issue of public interest to engage with.

    Set course for home, Mr Sulu.

  32. Anonymous3:02 pm

    How come some people so ignorant..
    There's a guy here who says maybe "Malaysia will have its own satyam soon" ha..ha.ha..ha


  33. Anonymous8:54 am

    This latest promotion from AirAsia (AA)to offer free flight to passengers makes mind boggling.All we need to do is to book on line in advance with a payment of RM 70 as airport tax.
    Over 500,000 have snapped the offer
    which amounts to RM 35,000,000.00

    While AA will be earning interest on this RM 35m,one begins to wonder what happens to those who could not make the flight.Will that money and interest be surrendered to the government or just be forfeited by AA.

    (frequent traveller)