This made everyone angry and three of the companies withdrew and refused to participate in the ‘re-tender’. This new player was not only not pre-qualified for the job but is known to be a Najib-crony company. Desmond Lim is also a partner with the controversial playboy, Taek Jho Low, who is linked to ‘First Lady’ Rosmah Mansor, and is the key player in the Sungai Besi airport redevelopment.THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
Desmond and Cindy: new crony kings?
The new king crony in Putrajaya, according to a new blog, is Desmond Lim of property developers Malton Bhd and the man behind the Pavilion luxury shopping centre in Bukit Bintang, KL.
Desmond Lim has been linked in the press recently with the proposed redevelopment of RMAF Sg Besi, the city’s old international airport and currently an air force base. Raja Petra Kamarudin recently linked Desmond Lim and his wife Cindy in rivalry with Tan Kay Hock of Johan Holdings for the ears of the prime minister over several big government projects.
RPK said Desmond and Cindy were close to Najib Tun Razak’s wife Rosmah, and had been behind a railway purchase of electric train sets. Tan Kay Hock was linked to China Harbour Engineering, from whom he is alleged to have tried to squeeze a RM200 million commission, and the Gemas-JB double-tracking rail project, which RPK said had been awarded to China Road Engineering.
1MDB, Malton to redevelop RMAF base
The cabinet has agreed in principle to entrust the task of redeveloping the Sungai Besi Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) base to a consortium of companies that include 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), sources say.
The other members of the consortium are Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT) and Datuk Desmond Lim of Malton Bhd, they say. It cannot be ascertained if Malton or Lim, through his private company, has a stake in the consortium.
It is learnt that the mandate of the consortium is to develop the 162-hectare site into a multi-billion-ringgit Islamic financial centre. This is in line with the government’s plans to enhance Malaysia as a regional Islamic financial centre.
Read those two items above? Good, now read the two news items below by The Star and The Edge.
Okay, what I want to talk about is what was NOT reported in the news. The RM1.6 billion tender for the 51km Sungai Buloh-Kajang My Rapid Transit (MRT) project had already closed with six companies bidding for the job. Then, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak instructed MRT Corp to reopen the tender to allow a company backed by Desmond Lim to submit a bid.
This made everyone angry and three of the companies withdrew and refused to participate in the ‘re-tender’. This new player was not only not pre-qualified for the job but is known to be a Najib-crony company. Desmond Lim is also a partner with the controversial playboy, Taek Jho Low, who is linked to ‘First Lady’ Rosmah Mansor, and is the key player in the Sungai Besi airport redevelopment.
It looks like in the end it is always the same players. Pi mai, pi mai, tang tu juga, as the Penangites will say. Najib, Rosmah, Desmond Lim, Jho Low, Tan Kay Hock. It is always these same people getting the multi-billion ringgit government jobs.
What reforms and transparency is Najib talking about when he can reopen a closed tender to allow his crony-companies to submit a bid even when the company has not been pre-qualified for the job? And now that everyone has already submitted their prices it is so easy for the new company to submit an even lower price to outbid everyone else.
Oh, they can always issue a Variation Order later to increase the price so that at the end of the day they can make even more money. So the ‘lower’ bidder will not lose. It is only the taxpayers who will lose. And Desmond Lim, Jho Low, and Rosmah can laugh all the way to the bank.
Maybe next time Jho Low will not make the same mistake of sending a multi-million USD ring by post through the Malaysian Customs Department. Just slip it in your pocket and go meet the ‘First Lady’ in Europe or somewhere.
Dear Najib, we are watching you. Don’t think you can get away with something like this undetected. We know that the RM1.6 billion is going to push way past RM2 billion before the contract is over. And that is our money you are playing around with. And if you insist on proceeding with this transgression be ready to pack your bags and move out of Putrajaya come the next general election.
Hmm...I wonder what Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is going to say about this. After all, Najib is his boy, is he not?
Several allegations are thrown at MRT Corp and Prasarana over public rail projects
(The Star) - The degree of clarity and transparency for the tendering and bidding process for Malaysia's rail public transportation has once again resurfaced.
It was reported in an English daily that three out of the six pre-qualified companies have walked away from the RM1.6bil My Rapid Transit (MRT) supply tender for the 51km Sungai Buloh-Kajang line without submitting a bid.
A source familiar with the matter said there were requests for extension and this was duly given by MRT Corp.
“It is obvious that MRT Corp wanted more bidders and an extension was given. MRT Corp meant business when it provided that extension, as it wanted a bigger pool to choose from.”
“At the same time, it also means business because it has its own deadlines to meet. A delay of three months may result in the completion of the project being postponed by one year,” said the source.
The reasons given by the three parties for not submitting their bids although they were qualified to do so included insufficient time to put in their bids and concerns about favouritism.
The companies that did not submit their bids were South Korea's Hyundai Rotem Company, Japan's Kawasaki Heavy Industries Rolling Stock Co and Canada's Bombadier Transportation.
Those that have submitted their bids were Germany's Siemens SMH Rail Consortium, Chinese train-makers Changchun Railways Vehicle Co Ltd and CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Co Ltd. The winner is expected to be announced in late July.
The source familiar with the matter said there has been “a huge leap in clarity and transparency” in MRT Corp.
“I would reckon that for MRT Corp to make public the full list of bidders is a massive step forward. So (in this particular case) it may be a case of sour grapes,” the source said.
Another source said that the global economic uncertainties may have put paid the three foreign companies' pushing ahead with their bids.
“I understand that some of them were really interested at first but decided not to pursue due to the uncertain situation stemming from the eurozone crisis,” a source with knowledge of the matter said.
StarBiz understands that at least two of the foreign companies had wanted to preserve capital in view of the bleak economic times.
MRT Corp's director of strategic communications and PR Amir Mahmood Razak said it was inaccurate to say that foreign companies were not interested in continuing with the bidding process.
The fact that the three foreign companies bought the tender documents when they were pre-qualified showed that they were interested.
“These companies had spent money to buy the pre-qualification tender forms,” he said.
Amir added that the companies were shortlisted for the job earlier, and all candidates went through a very stringent filtering process.
“MRT Corp has three bids, and we will now evaluate this bid as planned. By the end of July we should know who won,” Amir said.
The issue of clarity and transparency in the tendering and bidding process for the rail packages surfaced in April.
It involved a British and a South Korean company over the Ampang light rail transit and its extension and re-signalling package.
In that particular instance, Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd favoured a South Korean group but the final say was to be given by the Finance Ministry.
The validity of the bid for the systems contract for the Ampang line extension has been extended three times, since tenders closed on June 16, 2011.
Prasarana is a wholly-owned company set up by the Finance Ministry to facilitate, undertake and expedite public infrastructure projects.
The award has not been given and Prasarana group managing director Datuk Shahril Mokhtar hoped that the Government would award the systems contract for the Ampang LRT line extension soon to avoid further delay in completing the job.
MRT’s RM1.6 billion tender gets disappointing response