Minister of Transport’s reply to the issue that I have brought up concerning the debts owed by AirAsia to MAHB and the upgrading project of LCCT, which was awarded to Fajarbaru Builder Group Bhd totaling RM123.9 million.
Deputy Minister of Transport has confirmed that the actual debt owed by AirAsia is RM110 million and not as stated by Datuk Tony Fernandes, the CEO of AirAsia. He stressed that we should not bother about what has been said by Tony Fernandes. It was also not true that there were no actions taken by MAHB to recover the said debt. He said that MAHB did telephone and write letters to AirAsia asking for payment of the said debt of RM110 million. He reconfirmed that the total debt owed to MAHB is RM110 million.
When I said that recovery of debts via telephone calls and letters were not enough and asked why there were no legal actions taken by MAHB, as Government GLC, against AirAsia to recover the said debts. The Deputy Minister could not reply and he pushed the responsibility to the Minister of Finance as MAHB is under the control of GLC. I also told him that I have asked the Minister of Finance 2, YB Tan Sri Noor Yakob, yesterday regarding the discussion and YB Tan Sri Noor told me that debt between GLC and private company has nothing to do with the Ministry of Finance. The Deputy Minister did not respond about this.
From henceforth the Deputy Minister refused to take further clarification.
He went on to state that open tenders were carried out for the LCCT project costing RM123.9 million. Seven tenders were received and Fajabaru was the lowest. Eight tenders were received for the Penang Airport.
I wanted to ask for further clarification from the reply given by the said Deputy Minister as follows:
Why MAHB allowed AirAsia to owe the debt since 2002?
If AirAsia refused to pay the debt since 2002, why didn’t the Ministry advise or instruct MAHB to withdraw all services including the utilization of all facilities under the care and control of MAHB ?
To provide list of the names of contractors who have tendered for the LCCT job and the Penang Airport and their respective tendered sum for each of the project?
Fajarbaru is a company and its core business is “INVESTMENT HOLDING & PROVISION FOR FINANCIAL SERVICE”. Surely lowest tender price cannot be the main criteria for appointment to do the work - the experience and track records must also be of equal importance. Why MAHB and the Ministry did not take into consideration i.e. the experience and track records before the appointment of Fajarbaru?
Wee Choo Keong adalah Ahli Parlimen Wangsa Maju.