AT a time when generally every single citizen has to tighten his or her belt to ensure survivability, the latest Facebook posting by veteran journalist Datuk A Kadir Jasin, “Hantu raya Seri Perdana terus menggila” (loosely translated as “Seri Perdana’s great ghost goes berserk”) easily strikes a chord with Malaysians of all levels.
In his captivating post, Kadir clarified that the actual renovation cost of the Prime Minister’s (PM) official residence in Putrajaya stood at RM38.5 mil instead of RM30 mil (as per the media statement of Special Functions Minister Datuk Dr Abdul Latiff Ahmad).
To re-cap, the renovation project was only approved on March 19 this year during the premiership of Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin with works commencing 10 days later on March 29.
As of Sept 29, the project was already 74% completed although the irony is that Muhyiddin is not destined to occupy the residence in view of his resignation as PM on Aug 16.
“Responding to netizen Ba Yon, without prejudice, based on the information that I received, the project’s contractor is Kumpulan Awam Bina Sdn Bhd. If indeed this is true, can we know if the project was secured via tender or direct negotiation?” asked Kadir in his FB posting.
“They preach about being concerned of the rakyat’s plight and the Malaysian Family concept. With the exorbitant RM38.5 mil renovation cost, we can rent 310,483 units of the Hardcore Poor Housing Project (PPRT) flat at a monthly rental cost of RM124 per unit.”
Netizen Yeop Antan seconded Kadir’s call for the Government to reveal the true identity of the contractor.
“Not even a year of work and the price already fetches RM38.5 mil. Moreover, it’s not like they’re starting from scratch, it’s just renovating. Starting from scratch might even cost less. How bad was the wiring? Did Rosmah’s demons bite off the wires?”
Tun Mikael felt that such a major allocation is uncalled for at this moment in time when the economic outlook is bleak and uncertain.
“Shouldn’t this be the time to be prudent and to spend carefully? Is it because the current Government is not chosen by the people, hence there is no sense of trust and accountability in their action?”
Soon Tet Leong philosophised that what has been revealed and what is still happening each day are all signs of a general failure of Malaysia as a nation. – Sept 30, 2021