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Sarawak should explain extra RM200m spent, says DAP
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MIRI: Sarawak DAP wants the state government to give a detailed financial breakdown on why some RM200mil in extra expenditures had been paid to construct 384 temporary bridges in Sarawak.

State DAP Information Chief David Wong said the Federal Government must also provide a satisfactory answer to this "fiasco" in Sarawak.

"We are talking about wastages amounting to RM200mil, and for constructing bridges that are temporary. The public have a right to know what had actually happened.

"It is not good enough for an auditor-general's report to be published and then for the matter to be eventually forgotten.

"That has happened many times before. But this time, the amount is too huge to be simply forgotten. The people in Sarawak deserve some good answers," Wong said on Friday.

Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang in his recent report to the Dewan Rakyat said that "the lack of detailed preliminary studies" was the reason why the construction costs of 384 of the 570 temporary bridges in Sarawak had risen from RM551.02mil to RM741.2mil.

Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Alfred Jabu on Thursday said in Kuching that if such problems arose because of faults by the state Public Works Department (JKR) then he would rectify it, but added that many such projects are under federal jurisdiction.

Wong yesterday described Jabu's reply as "flimsy and shallow".

"Such a reply is totally unacceptable. The state government and the Federal Government must furnish a detailed breakdown on what happened to the extra RM200mil that was used up.

"To which company was the extra amount paid, for which projects, what was the initial cost, what was the increase and why was there such an increase?

"The state government cannot simply push the blame to the federal side. Both the state and federal governments must be held accountable and both are answerable to the people of Sarawak," he stressed.

Wong said Sarawak DAP wants an independent commission to be set up to investigate such misuse of funds in the state, adding that the opposition parties want to be in the commission.

The people in Sarawak will be very disappointed if no proper action were taken to penalise those guilty of mismanagement or hiking up the costs of such projects, he said.

Posted on: 2007/9/15 11:01

Edited by webmaster on 2007/12/29 15:04:26
_________________
news articles copied from numerous of external resources which includes Borneo Post, The Star, Bernama. Copyright belongs to their respective owner.
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Re: Sarawak should explain extra RM200m spent, says DAP
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2006/7/12 8:45
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Quote:
MP TO QUERY RM1B CONTRACT TO TAIB'S SON

Tony Thien
14/09/2007

A DAP legislator said today that he would ask questions in Parliament and the Sarawak Legislative Assembly about the Auditor-General’s Report 2006 regarding the RM1 billion bridge replacement project awarded to a company owned by a son of Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.

DAP’s Chong Chieng Jen - the Bandar Kuching parliamentarian and Kota Sentosa state assemblyperson - told a press conference in Kuching that the AG’s report was a ‘damning audit report’ about the affairs surrounding the award of the seven-year contract.

The contract was given by the Sarawak cabinet to Kuching-based Titanium Management Sdn Bhd in 2000 to replace 384 bailey and wooden bridges on a design-and-build basis with an initial contract sum of RM551.01 million.

Total allocation RM1.02b

In November 2006, the state government reduced the number of bridges to be built under the contract by 62 to 322 but instead revised the contract sum upwards to RM947.84 million - an increase of RM396.82 million, or 72% - according to the AG’s report.

According to the AG’s Report, up to December 2006, a total of 259 bridges were completed with the remaining 63 bridges under construction with interim claims totaling RM741.24 million.

It added that the state government estimated the total cost when all bridges were completed by September 2007 would be RM947.84 million.

In November 2004, the state government approved a total financial allocation of RM1.02 billion for the project.

Under the contract between Titanium Management and the state government, payment could be paid in cash or in kind (with land).

Up to December 2006, the contractor had submitted a total of 71 claims for progressive payments totaling RM741.24 million. Of the total, RM500.95 million - including RM26.97 million interests (on delayed payments) - had been paid to the company.

Chong said that based on the AG’s report it would seem that RM240 million of the total claims had not been paid. Based on the agreement, the government is liable to pay 2% interest per month on delayed payments.

The agreement states that claims for progress payments of certified work done must be paid within 26 days of the claims being received.

Ah Long’s interest rate

Commenting on this, the opposition elected representative said the interest charged - 24% per annum - is almost equivalent to Ah Long’s interest rate.

Taib’s eldest son Mahmud Abu Bekir holds 1,430,000 shares, or more than 50% of the company equity. His major partner is Chris Chung Soon Nam, who holds 900,000 shares and a former state director of the Public Works Department (PWD), Michael Ting Kuok Ngie, holds 10,000 shares.

Chong, who read out parts of the AG’s Report to reporters, said the AG’s Report released earlier this week raised questions regarding the contract award to a company registered only in 1998 with a paid-up capital of RM2.4 million to undertake a government project valued at more than half-a-billion ringgit.

Titanium has subsequently awarded all its contract works out to 44 sub-contractors.

According to the AG’s report, the company had failed to conduct detailed and complete preliminary studies as it was required to do so before being awarded the design-and-build contract on a turnkey basis.

This had partly resulted in partly cost escalation when actual works were carried out.

However, auditor-general said the contractor’s completion rate of the bridge replacement project was satisfactory - not a single bridge project was behind scheduled time, it added.

Jabu’s statement

Chong said the government must explain the serious cost over-runs as it involved the people’s money and he intended to raise the matter in Parliament and the State Assembly next month.

Meanwhile, in what appeared to be a initial reaction to the AG's report, Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu, a close Taib ally, was quoted today in the Borneo Post as blaming the delay in the completion of certain federal road projects in Sarawak to the lack of planning, control and supervision of such projects given to the state government.

He said if the state had been given better control by the federal authorities through PWD and other state agencies over project planning, control, supervision and implementation some of the delays could have been avoided.

Commenting on this, Chong said Jabu - who is also in charge of public works - was only trying to divert public attention from the real issue, such as the contract award and its huge cost over-runs given to the company controlled by Taib's son.

“His (Jabu's) comments are ridiculous and laughable,” he added.

Source


RM200 million VS. RM1 billion. It just shows how much our mainstream media reports differently from independent media eh?

Posted on: 2007/9/15 21:01
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Re: Sarawak should explain extra RM200m spent, says DAP
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2007/5/24 14:47
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Pek Moh's bro tore down his house and is currently building it from scratch. If I had too much ill-gotten money, I might just do that too.

Jambu is doing his community a big disfavour. The poor Dayaks are ever falling behind... I can't imagine how this man can face his people everyday and go home and have a good night's sleep.

Keep up the good work Chong!

Posted on: 2007/9/16 21:46
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Re: Sarawak should explain extra RM200m spent, says DAP
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2007/12/22 0:41
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these things i think only become a hot topic for a few days, then die down.. maybe someone is behind it trying to cover it up?

Posted on: 2007/12/29 11:03
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