War of words leads Wee to promise to resign

24 Nov 2020 / 16:46 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: In a bold move, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong (pix) put his job on the line by promising to resign if he is caught lying.

This followed after a war of words broke out between Wee and his predecessor, Anthony Loke, as he was giving clarification on the Klang Valley Double-track Project phase 2 (KVDT2) during the winding-up of Budget 2021 for his ministry.

Wee said the government decided to reopen the KVDT2 tender as the original contractor was appointed through direct negotiations.

He said the decision effectively dismissed Dhaya Maju Infrastructure (Asia) Sdn Bhd (DMIA) and its partner Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT) as the project contractor.

Wee said KTM Bhd had also raised its concerns over Dhaya Maju-LTAT’s competency to carry out works on KVDT2.

He said this was based on its observation on the first phase carried out by the company.

He said Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief commissioner Datuk Seri Azam Baki in his letter had said the procurement process for the project was not done in accordance to procedure.

Loke (PH-Seremban), who blew his top at this point, said the project was approved during the tenure of Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai as transport minister and Wee was also in the Cabinet as minister in the prime minister’s department.

Loke then accused Wee of lying.

“Why are you jumping? If I’m found to be lying, I will resign,“ Wee said at this juncture.

“You had 15 minutes to attack me during debate while I was in hospital; it is my right to explain what actually happened.

“I will definitely take legal action to clear my name. Stop being a spokesman for the company and respect the court decision,” Wee said.

He added he would present the necessary documents as proof if challenged in court.

He said he stood by the decision of the Cabinet, saying any company to be awarded through open tender must cooperate with LTAT to carry out the project.

Loke had previously questioned the government’s motive for cancelling the contract with Dhaya Maju-LTAT, saying that the government would have to fork out RM1 billion in settlement to the company.

It was reported that Dhaya Maju–LTAT received the original Letter of Award (LoA) in April 2018 for the KVDT2 project during the Barisan Nasional (BN) administration and had commenced work.

The original KVDT2 award was terminated in October 2018 by the Pakatan Harapan government.

However, in July 2019, the PH government agreed to reappoint Dhaya Maju-LTAT to implement the KVDT2 project after taking into consideration the legal implications.

The High Court had on Sept 18 dismissed an application by Dhaya Maju-LTAT for an injunction against the government and Wee to bar them from terminating a contract with the company for the construction of the KVDT2, despite having completed 24% of the project.

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