SHAH ALAM: Defence Minister DSU Muhamad Hasan said today that the first LCS – PCU Maharaja Lela – will be completed in the third quarter of 2024. This was the second time that the Defence Minister – who one month ago said he did not enough about the project to comment on it – had stated that the ship will be ready in 2024. He had said this in an unscripted remark at the new year message ceremony at Wisma Pertahanan last week. His predecessor stated before that the first ship will be ready in 2025.
Today, he reiterated that the ship will be ready following a visit to the Lumut naval base. From Sinar Daily:
LUMUT – The Defence Ministry is satisfied with the recent status of the littoral combat ship (LCS) project with one of six ships expected to be ready next year, says its minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.
Mohamad said his visit to the Malaysian Navy Base on Monday found the ships’ development was within the stipulated timeframe and in stages, following the appropriate capabilities.
“The first ship is at 70 per cent (completion). There was only one block that was missing for it to be complete, so it would not take much time. The engine parts, propellers, and gearboxes were installed; only the electrical equipment and the weapons remained.
“I am confident the first ship will be done by 2024 before its seaworthiness is tested and then commissioned,” he said in a press conference after his visit on Monday.
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Muhamad visited Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) as part of his two-day visit to the Lumut naval base. He was briefed on the LCS project by BNS CEO Azhar Jumaat. Note that the 70 per cent completion of Maharaja Lela as stated by the Defence Minister is much higher than it was reported previously. It is unclear whether this means that BNS had managed to do some work on the ship when it was announced that the mobilisation phase had started.
— Malaysian Defence