KUALA LUMPUR: To be honest, I was thinking of doing something else tonight but the sound of a Fenestron-equipped helicopter inspired me to write this posting.
As it is pitch black tonight, I am unable to positively identify the helicopter, which started doing the circuit about 9pm, but I am pretty sure it is one of the three Eurocopter EC155 which the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency received in August.
Although delivered, these helicopters are not yet in service as the essential mission equipment ( mostly the FLIR) as was reported in an earlier post, have not been installed in these aircraft. As I have made clear my position on the matter in the post, there is no need to repeat it in this post.
However, after the publication of the Auditor-General report that revealed at least two LEO II FLIR system, worth RM10.2 million) are currently stored at the police Air Wing hangar gathering dusts, got me thinking on the unwise decision to install the mission equipment on the EC155 locally.
Since MMEA had stated that the mission equipment of the EC155 was to be fitted locally, I wonder whether in trying to reduce costs and to make use of the dust gathering equipment, the Govt had decided to install the LEO II on the MMEA helicopters instead/
It is a distinctly possibility and since the FLIR was not compatible with the Mi-171 operated by Bomba (bought originally for police as detailed by the Auditor General report) it make sense for the pencil pusher to order the equipment be installed on the MMEA helicopters.
At the moment, Malaysian Defence cannot get anyone to confirm on my gut reaction but as soon as I get a closer look of the MMEA new helicopters and their mission equipment, I will definitely post it here even just to prove whether or not my gut feeling is wrong or right.
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