SHAH ALAM: He said, she said. The Defence Ministry brought the media to visit the Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) in Lumut on August 13, in an apparent damage control attempt following the publication of the Public Accounts Committe (PAC) report on the LCS project.
The media was given a guided tour of the shipyard and even the warehouses where equipment meant for the LCS are kept- by BNS CEO Azhar Jumaat. Azhar, the previous BNS LCS director, were among the many people who gave testimony to the PAC.
Mindef release on the visit:
Lumut, 13 Ogos 2022- Menteri Kanan Pertahanan berulang kali menegaskan bahawa tiada perkara yang akan beliau dan Kementerian Pertahanan sembunyikan berkaitan LCS.
Ketegasan ini sekali lagi diterjemahkan hari ini apabila MINDEF membuka peluang kepada sebanyak lebih kurang 20 agensi media untuk mengadakan lawatan ke Boustead Naval Shipyard di Lumut Perak.
Lawatan ini bukan sekadar bertujuan memberi taklimat tentang reka bentuk LCS, malah paling utama semua wakil media diberi ruang untuk melihat sendiri secara dekat kapal-kapal LCS yang sudah di peringkat pembinaan. Mereka juga dibenarkan mengambil video dan gambar untuk tatapan umum.
Mereka turut dibawa ke gudang penyimpanan peralatan LCS yang akan dipasang kelak.
Lawatan hari ini telah mendapat maklum balas yang amat baik dari setiap wakil media dan semua boleh mengesahkan bahawa kapal LCS sudah di peringkat pembinaan. Terima kasih rakan-rakan media yang turut serta hari ini.
Clearly the ministry wanted Azhar to rebut some of the reports on mainstream and social media on the LCS following the publication of the report. Did the damage control work? Not really based on the comments on the ministry’s post. Anyhow, Azhar’s statements during the visit will surely be rebutted by the various people who had commented on the PAC report. The conversation has clearly degenerated into a he said/she said scenario with no clear end in sight.
The pictures provided by the ministry also showed that the statement made by LTAT CEO Nazim Rahman on his personal Facebook not really that truthful especially on “work on the ships are continuing”.
From the pictures, PCU Maharaja Lela did not look as having any recent work on her apart from being shifted around the yard to accommodate the refit work being conducted by BNS on RMN ships including KD Kasturi and one of the Lekiu class.
One good thing though about this attempt of transparency – belated as it is – that it should be followed with other big tickets items under the ministry that had not been contracted yet. The openness might well prevent the MALE UAS, MPA and FLIT-LCA from becoming like the MD-530G and LCS projects. Or will Rahsia supersede everything even shenanigans, corruption, and collusion.
— Malaysian DefenceIf you like this post, buy me an espresso. Paypal Payment