Professional courtesy, deficient

The 9M-AWK, shot in Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Halim, Alor Setar the morning a VVIP party leader flew in to attend the breakfast with rakyat of Pendang

The 9M-AWK, shot in Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Halim, Alor Setar the morning a VVIP party leader flew in to attend the breakfast with rakyat of Pendang

Our earlier story about the high possibility of Malaysian Government or any of its agencies leasing a ACJ320 VVIP jet with tail number 9H-AWK from a Malta-based executive Comlux Aviation drew so many attention.

Datuk Rocky asked the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to respond to the story ASAP.

This came through the comment section:

Kenyataan Akhbar

Penggunaan Pesawat Khas

Pejabat Perdana Menteri ingin menarik perhatian berhubung laporan blog mengenai penggunaan pesawat khas untuk Perdana Menteri.

Laporan tersebut mengandungi beberapa fakta yang salah dan tidak tepat yang boleh menimbulkan persepsi yang tidak tepat kepada penggunaan pesawat khas tersebut.

Kerajaan sebelum ini memiliki 5 buah pesawat khas iaitu ACJ A319, BBJ, Fokker F28, Global Express dan Falcon 900 yang diperuntukkan untuk kegunaan YDP Agong, YAB Perdana Menteri, dan YAB Timbalan Perdana Menteri.

Tertakluk kepada syarat-syarat yang ditetapkan oleh Kerajaan, pesawat-pesawat ini juga boleh diluluskan untuk kegunaan oleh DYMM Sultan-sultan dan TYT Yang Dipertua-Yang Dipertua Negeri, YB Menteri-Menteri dan Timbalan-Timbalan Menteri, tetamu-tetamu Kerajaan Persekutuan dari negara asing, Pegawai-pegawai Kanan Kerajaan serta orang-orang kenamaan.

Pada Ogos 2012, pesawat Fokker F28 telah dilupuskan kerana telah berusia lebih 30 tahun dan tiada pesawat gantian dicadangkan.

Pada tahun lepas, pesawat BBJ dan ACJ A319 telah dijadualkan untuk menjalani proses penyelenggaraan wajib. Pesawat BBJ menjalani urusan penyelenggaraan di antara Januari-Julai 2013 sementara ACJ319 di antara 15 Jun-8 Oktober.

Sejajar dengan itu, Jabatan Perdana Menteri yang bertanggungjawab atas urusan pesawat khas Kerajaan telah mengambil keputusan menyewa sebuah pesawat lain ACJ A320 bagi menampung kekurangan pesawat.

Pesawat ACJ A320 ini disewa di antara 1 Februari – 31 Disember 2013 setelah mendapati pesawat BBJ memerlukan lebih masa bagi urusan penyelenggaraan.

Penggunaan pesawat khas membolehkan Ketua Negara dan Ketua Kerajaan bergerak di dalam dan luar negara dengan keadaan keselamatan yang lebih terjamin. Selain itu, Anggota Pentadbiran yang sibuk dengan pelbagai urusan tidak terikat kepada jadual perjalanan komersil di samping kepentingan menjaga imej negara.

Pejabat Perdana Menteri
Putrajaya
3 Januari 2014

*********

It was posted by someone who claims to be “Rizal Mansor”. It looks like something official but we don’t quite understand why it was posted in a comment section, instead being e mailed to us through a PMO e mail.

That would made it official. Of course, we would be providing the space for the response to be posted.

Who is this “Rizal Mansor”?

Obviously he is not a personality the administrators of this blog could relate to, when it comes to the communication and media of the Prime Minister’s Office. There are other officers who have established a working level mutual respect and relationship with administrators of BigDogDotCom.

Instances are speeches by Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak, which were posted here in this blog were transmitted via e mail.

It is baffling the fact that why wasn’t the official media release in response to the story, which originated by this blog, was not e mailed by a known media officer in the PMO.

It was not until Datuk Rocky verified the authenticity of this media statement did we decide to post it here.

What happened to the professional courtesy of the officers of PMO?

At least almost two weeks ago, when Special Officer to the CEO of PEMANDU wanted to correct an erroneous story by another blog, it was e mailed to us. We posted the e mail. It was also e mailed to the said blogger.

*Updated Saturday 4 January 2014 1000hrs

Published in: on January 3, 2014 at 19:45  Comments (28)  

Penny Wise, Pound Foolish (part II)

Malaysian Government VVIP jet ACJ319 with tail number 9M-NAA

Malaysian Government VVIP jet ACJ319 with tail number 9M-NAA

The austerity drive announced by Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak the morning before New Year’s eve probably driven a start of an even bigger spending cuts. Especially the excessive and luxury bit, which is more likely many times over as compared to the savings to the cost saving exercise, which saw meagre salary and entertainment allowances cut.

The excessive expenditure particularly in question is the ‘Travels in Luxury’.

The ACj319 with the tail number 9M-NAA in a more recent livery

The ACJ319 with the tail number 9M-NAA in a more recent livery

On 3 October 2013 Minister in PM’s Department Dato’ Seri Shahidan Kassim disclosed that the cost of PM Najib’s annual rental and maintenance of VVIP jet utilised to ferry him around RM34.3 million. That is without the fuel and food and beverages bill and other operational charges.

Another interesting story by The Malay Mail is that RM180 million was the bigger tab, encompassing all the cost related to Prime Minister’s travel.

PMO: Putrajaya splurged RM180m to fly private in 2012

BY MELISSA CHI

NOVEMBER 7, 2013

UPDATED: NOVEMBER 07, 2013 05:08 PM

A porter is silhouetted as he pushes luggage trollies at Kuala Lumpur International Airport  in Sepang on August 19, 2010. – AFP picA porter is silhouetted as he pushes luggage trollies at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang on August 19, 2010. – AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 7 — At a time of austerity and subsidy cuts, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) revealed today that the government spent more than RM180 million for fuel and maintenance to fly private for official trips in 2012.

In a written reply to Seremban MP Anthony Loke, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim said the government owns and operates six private jets known as Government Executive Jets (VVIP).

They include one unit of Falcon jet, one Global Express, one Boeing Business Jet, one Blackhawk, and two Agusta jets.

”For the cost of fuel for all aircrafts used in 2012 is RM14,951,448 and RM167,079,541.80 was spent on maintenance costs,” he said.

Just last month, Shahidan said in a written parliamentary reply to Taiping MP Nga Kor Ming that Putrajaya spends RM28.8 million in annual rental and RM5.5 million to maintain the VVIP government jet ACJ319, the private aircraft used to ferry prime ministers much like the Air Force One in the US.

“To ensure the VVIP government jet ACJ319 remain in a good condition and has the highest level of safety, the government has spent US$25.2 million (RM80.12 million) in rental costs, RM16.52 million for maintenance and RM3.32 million for modification works from the year 2010 to last year,” Shahidan said in the reply.

Nga had asked the ministry to reveal details on the costs involved in buying or renting the official jet, its maintenance bills and the price of modification works that goes with it from 2000 until today.

Nga later told reporters in Parliament that in addition to the private jet costs, the government had also forked out RM44 million to fund the prime minister’s overseas travels since 2008.

The Taiping MP suggested the prime minister could travel first class on Malaysia’s flag carrier Malaysia Airlines, emulating his counterpart in Singapore, as it would save “millions” of taxpayers’ money.

Nga also urged the Auditor-General to audit the Prime Minister’s Department to prove that it is transparent and is accountable for the ministry’s financial management.

Today, Shahidan also revealed that there were 372 flights recorded last year alone, to 339 destinations on official government business.

Loke said that this is another example of wastage involving the government’s expenditure, particularly on the highest government officials.

“The government asked the people to tighten their belts, lower their costs and reduce subsidy but every time we get these answers, it shows that the government is not reducing their expenditure,” he said.

Loke also pointed out that on average, each flight costs RM489,330.

“Based on the number of times the aircrafts were used in 2012 — 372, that means there is at least one flight daily, of course the prime minister doesn’t go overseas every day… of course this also involve domestic flights,” he said, and argued that private jets were not necessary for flights within the country.

Loke’s ally from PAS, Pokok Sena MP Mahfuz Omar, who was also at the press conference, suggested that the government’s top executives should fly using commercial airplanes more frequently from next year onwards, including for their overseas trips.

He proposed that the private jets be reserved only for Malaysia’s King.

“The executive aircrafts should only be used by the Agong, because he doesn’t  travel as often.

“It is the prime minister and his deputy that are always using the aircrafts which is wasting the people and the country’s money,” Mahfuz said.

– See more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/pmo-putrajaya-splurged-rm180m-to-fly-private-in-2012#sthash.6Ly4gxeM.dpuf

*****************

This is really an exorbitant figure, for a VVIP flight operations and management cost. The “Thirteen Million Ringgit Plus” question; Can Malaysia Government afford ro spend this, which is part of the ‘Operational Budget’?

The online log for ACJ319 VVIP jet with tail number 9M-NAA dubbed "NR1" or "Perdana One"

The online log for ACJ319 VVIP jet with tail number 9M-NAA dubbed “NR1” or “Perdana One”

Continuance of 9M-NAA online log

Continuance of 9M-NAA online log

The controversy to Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor’s contentious travel to Qatar for the International Forum on Women Entrepreneur IV in early November using the “Perdana One” ACJ319 VVIP jet with tail number 9M-NAA is still the ‘market talk’ in many quarters, across the nation.

It is time that another issue be raised and brought into public debate.

The 9M-AWK, shot in Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Halim, Alor Setar the morning a VVIP party leader flew in to attend the breakfast with rakyat of Pendang

The 9H-AWK, shot in Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Halim, Alor Setar the morning a VVIP party leader flew in to attend the breakfast with rakyat of Pendang

It seems a second ACJ320 with the tail number 9H-AWK has been constantly leased by “High Ranking Politician in Malaysia”. The aircraft is registered to a Malta based VIP jet charter, Comlux Aviation.

What is interesting, the 9H-AWK aircraft in Comlux Aviation’s own log has been dubbed as “NR2” or “Perdana 2”.

Continuance of the online 9H-AWK log

Continuance of the online 9H-AWK log

The suspicion to who or which organisation which leased this ACJ320 is as good as ours. However, what is most important if the lease for the 9H-AWK is or was paid by the Malaysian Government, any corporations or individuals.

If the Malaysian Government foot the bill for this lease, then the public also has the right to know why is the money spent especially when there are four other VVIP jets, namely the ACJ319, BBJ, Bombardier Global Express and Falconjet 900.

The ACJ320 with the tail number 9H-AWK being shot in various locations

The ACJ320 with the tail number 9H-AWK being shot in various locations

If the bill has been and probably still is, being underwritten by a corporation, then the Malaysian public should have the right to know whether it is a GLC or not. If it is a GLC and the corporation is a plc, then there are questions to be addressed. It is a matter of entitlement and accountability.

The luxurious interior of the 9H-AWK, fit for a Supreme Ruler

It is interesting to note that Comlux Aviation actually added the Jalur Gemilang and “Malaysia” on both side of the front fuselage of the ACJ320. It only proven that the client is material enough and of that high stature, to be recognised with the ‘national colours’.

This corner of the 9H-AWK VVIP jet will transform into a double bed, when its turned down in mid flight

The lease for this kind of travel is not cheap at all. It ranges between USD25,00–30,000 per hour. That is usually without the fuel and food and beverages bill. However, for long term or returning clients, a good discount could be expected.

The ACJ320 with tail number 9H-AWk, with the Jalur Gemilang on the front fuselage

The ACJ320 with tail number 9H-AWK, with the Jalur Gemilang on the front fuselage

It is pathetic if Prime Minister Najib’s austerity drive announced four days ago was actually ‘Penny Wise, Pound Foolish’ if it is true that the Malaysian Government or any of its agencies or corporations are involved in excessive luxury spending such as this. The ‘ruled’ would not tolerate if the ‘rulers’ live in this sort of opulence, especially when the common people facing hardship and reduced quality of living.

History has proven this too many times over. Santayana reminded us that those who failed to learn from the past, shall be damned to repeat the same mistakes again.

Published in: on January 3, 2014 at 01:59  Comments (22)