Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dont Cover-up these RM5.4 million False Claim Scandal

Below are the Press Statement By Penang Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng In George Town, Komtar On 24th June 2010 regarding RM5.4 million False Claim Scandal In The Contruction Of The RM65 million Swettenhem Pier Redevelopment Project


An artist's impression of how Port Swettenham will look like after the
project completion.

Don’t Cover Up RM5.4 million False Claim Scandal In The Contruction Of The RM65 million Swettenhem Pier Redevelopment Project

In a written reply to my question in Parliament on 14 June 2010 Minister in the Prime Minister Department Dato’ Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz said that investigations into the RM5.4million false claim scandal was still ongoing. He said the investigation papers have yet to be forwarded to the Attorney General chambers as investigators were still working on the case.

The Penang State Government is calling upon the Attorney-General's Chambers, the Transport Ministry and the Penang Port Commission to reveal what transpired in the RM5.4million progressive payment fraud two years ago in the construction of the RM65 million Swettenhem Pier redevelopment project and not try to cover it up.

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng was only highlighting the inaction of the RM5.4 million false claim scandal even though it was exposed by former Transport Minister, Datuk Ong Tee Keat himself on 16th August 2008. Ong said himself that the matter was already referred to the Attorney-General Chambers for action. And now the written reply contradicts this by saying that investigations are still on-going. (See reply below)

Penang Port Commission (PPC) Chairman, Tan Cheng Liang was reported to have said the authorities had discovered that it did not involve the Government's money. She said that the authorities could also not trace the person who falsified the claims and insinuated that the matter was only brought up now for political expediency.

The Penang State Government is concerned over how the issue could seem to be dismissed so summarily by the PPC chairman herself. Rather than trying to shift attention, the PPC, Transport Ministry and Attorney-General's Chambers should be focusing on trying to uncover what took place, who was responsible and to take action against these parties.

The case was highlighted in the newspaper on 16 August, 2008 by Transport Minister, Datuk Ong Tee Keat who said the Port Commission Authorities uncovered the case in March 2008. Ong’s shocking revelation that the contractor involved in the international cruise redevelopment project pier managed to collect RM5.4 million after falsifying documents.

The original claim for the progressive payments for the project was RM1.92 million. Ong said that the matter was handed to the Attorney-General's Chambers for further action. What is most shocking is that there are no efforts to recover the money and that PPC and the Transport Ministry does not appear to be actively pursuing the case to protect public interest.

The Penang State Government would also like to question why the Transport Ministry did not pursue the matter to the end when it was former Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat himself who revealed the scandal. The Attorney-General's Chambers, Transport Ministry and PPC should not be evasive but come clean over the scandal to explain if any money was recovered and the apparent inaction. The authorities should take the matter seriously and be accountable and transparent to protect the public interest.



LIM GUAN ENG


***********************************************

槟州首席部长林冠英于2010年6月24日在乔治市发表文告

勿掩盖瑞典咸码头重建工程承包商虚报540万令吉丑闻的真相

首相署部长拿督斯里纳兹里于2010年6月14日在国会书面答复我的问题时指出,瑞典咸码头虚报540万令吉丑闻的调查还在进行中。他说,调查报告还未交给总检察署因为调查官还在调查着这宗案件。

槟州政府促请总检察署、交通部与槟州港务局全面公布,而不是掩盖瑞典咸码头6千500万令吉重建工程承包商在两年前虚报540万令吉丑闻的真相。

虽然这个丑闻是由交通部长拿督斯里翁诗杰在2008年8月16日亲自揭发,但是槟州首席部长林冠英所关注的是,为何当局迄今没有针对这笔牵涉540万令吉虚报账目的丑闻采取行动。当时,翁诗杰指这个事件已交由总检察署去采取行动。然而,纳兹里的书面答复却说调查还在进行中(见附件)

根据报道,槟州港务局主席陈清凉指当局发现这笔虚报的账目没有牵涉公帑。她指有关当局无法找出虚报账目的始作俑者,并影射此时此刻才来炒作这个课题乃具有政治议程。

槟州政府非常关注槟州港务局主席三言两语就想打发掉整件事。令人惊讶的是,槟州港务局看来并不想追究这件事,反而作出没有根据的指责,包括指这件事应交由警方来调查。然而,翁诗杰却透露这件事已交给总检察署去采取行动。

翁诗杰告诉媒体,港务局委员会在2008年3月揭发上述丑闻。有关新闻在2008年8月16日见报。

翁诗杰揭露的内容很惊人。他说,这名承建国际渡轮码头工程的承包商在伪造文件后,收取540万令吉。上述工程原定分期付款的报账是192万令吉,翁诗杰当时说这宗案件已经交由总检察长采取进一步行动。更令人吃惊的是,没有人采取行动去取回这笔钱,槟州港务局和交通部看来并没积极追究这件事,以保障公众利益。

槟州政府质疑,既然这个丑闻是由交通部长拿督斯里翁诗杰亲自揭发,交通部如今又为何不要追究到底呢?总检察署、交通部与槟州港务局应当向公众交待整个丑闻的真相,包括交待是否取回这笔虚报的开销,以及为何没有采取行动的原由。有关当局必须认真看待这个事件,同时秉待公信与透明的原则来调查及采取行动,从而保护公众的利益。

林冠英

附上国会答复






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