DEWAN RAKYAT: It's cost-effective, ministry explains

THE Defence Ministry came under fire yesterday for buying second-hand defence equipment.

"It is strange. Why do we always settle for second hand equipment?" asked Datuk Bung Mokhtar Radin as several MPs nodded in agreement during the question-and-answer session.

However, Deputy Speaker Datuk Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar was not amused and told him to sit down and not interrupt the Deputy Defence Minister Datuk Wira Abu Seman Yusop who was explaining the rationale for buying second-hand equipment.

Abu Seman was replying to a question by Ahmad Maslan (Pontian-BN) who asked why the ministry often bought second-hand equipment such as the KD Sri Inderapura from the US Navy and whether the ship was still in good condition.

"Such purchases cost less. Sri Inderapura is still in good working condition," Abu Seman said.
On another matter, the government said it does not plan to publish a White Paper on defence.

The government had never spelt out any of its policies in a White Paper, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said in a written reply to Liew Chin Tong (Bukit Bendera-DAP).

The White Papers released by the government so far have been on the Militant Communist Threat (1966), Birth of Communist Threat (1971), Communists in Sarawak (1972), Memali Incident (1986), Bumiputera Malaysia Finance-Hong Kong (1986), Ops Lalang (1987) and Malaysia's Economic Status (1996).

Apart from that, Abdullah said the Defence Ministry was releasing the public edition of National Defence Policy which featured, among other things, defence relations, expenditure, industry, science and technology and security issues. -- Bernama

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