Friday 3 August 2012

Prasarana should declassify George Kent award documents, says Pua

August 03, 2012
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 3 — The DAP’s Tony Pua today called for Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd to declassify documents related to the controversial Ampang Line LRT extension deal, saying that it must prove that the George Kent consortium is the “most worthy” bidder.

The state-owned infrastructure company had on Tuesday announced that the George Kent-Lion Pacific joint venture (GKLP-JV) had won the deal, which George Kent yesterday said is worth RM956 million.

PKR’s strategy chief Rafizi Ramli has repeatedly accused the prime minister of allegedly interfering in the tender bid and granting the multimillion contract to George Kent, which he claimed was controlled by a “close associate” of the prime minister and which also scored one of the lowest points in the technical and commercial evaluation for the project.

“The onus is on the (federal) government to prove that there was absolutely no abuse of power, and the controversial award to the George Kent consortium is entirely above board,” Pua (picture) said in a statement today.

“The best way for the government to banish all accusations of cronyism and favouritism is by declassifying all related documents to the award of the project — from tender documents and submissions made for the project, to evaluation papers conducted by Prasarana and its panel of consultants as well as the minutes of meetings on decisions made by the Ministry of Finance in relation to the award of the project,” said Pua.

He further said: “Such declassification of documents is completely in line with the prime minister’s Government Transformation Programme (GTP) led by PEMANDU, which called for full transparency and accountability in government procurement processes.”

He pointed out that PEMANDU’s own study in the GTP Roadmap 2010 showed that “71 per cent of corporates claim ‘no transparency and openness’ in the award of government contracts.”

Pua had yesterday said the Barisan Nasional (BN) government appeared to ignore PEMANDU’s policies when awarding two LRT contracts.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP today said the federal government and Prasarana should be the ones telling the public that George Kent is the “best consortium” in terms of price and technical expertise, instead of the company itself.

George Kent had yesterday issued its first statement to refute what “baseless allegations that GKLP-JV failed the full technical and commercial evaluations.”

The firm said it has managed to diversify into managing construction projects that involve complex mechanical and engineering requirements in Malaysia and abroad.

It also said it has successfully delivered large projects on time and on budget, which includes the RM100 million construction and design of the new Kuala Lipis Hospital.

George Kent also said it will lead the Ampang LRT line project together with Tewet Gmbh, “a highly respected and internationally-recognised project management consultant with experience in over 400 similar projects completed around the globe.”

Rafizi had yesterday urged the federal government to set up a royal commission of inquiry (RCI) to probe the Ampang LRT line extension project award.

Rail projects have increasingly come under the spotlight due to the billions of ringgit that are involved, as the country embarks on a rail expansion drive that not only includes the extension of KL’s LRT system but also the new Klang Valley MRT, the southern rail double-tracking project and a possible high-speed rail line to Singapore.

The MRT project tender process was also recently hit by criticism after several multi-national vendors reportedly decided not to participate in the bid to supply rolling stock for the project, citing concerns over favouritism.

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