TNB unions protest direct contract award

KUALA LUMPUR: Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) unions on Friday voiced opposition to the direct award of Project 4A to SIPP Energy Sdn Bhd, with YTL Power International Bhd and TNB participating as consortium members.

A joint statement by four TNB unions, representing 34,900 members, stated that the workers did not agree should TNB accept the approach of conditional offer through direct negotiations as stated in a press statement by Energy Commission (EC) on May 31, 2014.

“All large scale energy generation awards should be made through competitive open tender. TNB must also maintain a hold on all its assets and property under any circumstances,” TNB unions stressed.

“We hold to the position that all TNB’s assets and land should not be sold or used for purposes that would not give any advantage to TNB. Instead, TNB has all the capacity, expertise and facilities to develop its own existing power station on land owned by TNB assets at prices that are competitive and people-friendly,” it said.

The unions also cited the recent remarks by YTL Corp Bhd group managing director Tan Sri Francis Yeoh dismissing the notion that his companies profited through crony capitalism, saying that this was in line with the unions’ stance on competitive tender.

“Therefore, he should support competitive open tender and decline the conditional offer of a direct negotiation by the EC,” the unions pointed out.

The TNB unions also rejected outright any collaboration with YTL. It said this was based on the bitter experience that TNB had gone through over a period of 20 years prior to this.

The union groups are also seeking further clarification on the exact location of the site of Project 4A.

“Does the area for the Poject 4A refer to land owned by TNB? If so, would the land belonging to TNB be used as happened with land owned by TNB Paka and Pasir Gudang power stations where YTL’s existing plants are located?” they asked.

“We hope that all the process of awarding energy generation projects be maintained through an open tender in order to ensure transparency and to protect the interests of the rakyat.” 

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