RM77 million: ‘Malaysia is Apco’s top client’

By Free Malaysia Today

SHAH ALAM: At RM77 million, Malaysia has become global public relations company Apco Worldwide’s highest paying client! This is according to Indera Mahkota MP Azan Ismail who said a former US ambassador to Malaysia had revealed this to him. “I was informed by a former US ambassador that from among Apco’s 50 branches in the world, not even one has received RM77 million in billings.

“The highest a client has paid is between US$2 million (RM6.3 million) and US$7 million only.

“This disclosure has raised several worrying questions,” he said.

Apco was appointed by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on July 15, 2009, to rebuild Malaysia’s image here and abroad through its 1Malaysia concept.

But after a year of the concept being introduced and millions spent, Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has admitted that the campaign had failed to achieve its targets and the public still had not grasped the full meaning of the concept of 1Malaysia.

Yet despite the “failure” of the concept, the Barisan Nasional government has renewed its contract with Apco Worlwide, maintaining it as its international consultants.

“The government must terminate Apco. Reneweing Apco’s contract amidst controversy simply means there is is a hidden agenda.

“Even (former prime minister) Dr Mahathir Mohamad has admitted that the 1Malaysia concept was weak, yet the government has gone ahead and renewed the deal. There appears to be another hidden aim.

“We are concerned that the RM77 million is being used for other purposes,” he said.

Najib-Muhyiddin rift

Azan also voiced his concern over Muhyddin’s comment that the campaign had failed to tickle public understanding of the spirit.

“My first question is, why is it difficult for the people to understand the 1Malaysia concept?

“Thus far, what is obvious is that this 1Malaysia campaign introduced by the Jews has had negative effects… for a start, our top two leaders (Najib and Muhyiddin) are not united in their acceptance of the 1Malaysia concept.

“We have spent tens of millions for the campaign… but all it has done is left us confused. If Muhyddin is confused, what more the people?” he asked.

Azan said the statements by Mahathir and Muhyiddin on Aug 3 about the weakness of the 1Malaysia campaign is a painful slap for Najib.