KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) should investigate the direct award of a RM1.4bil contract to the National Farmers Organisation (Nafas) by the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong (pic).
"The MACC should investigate as it is their job," the MCA president told reporters at the Parliament building lobby on Monday (Nov 25).
He said that it was puzzling that Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub and his deputy Sim Tze Zin had given conflicting replies to the issue.
"His deputy said in the Dewan Rakyat that they were not involved in the matter but the very next day, the minister admitted writing a letter to the Prime Minister over the issue.
"It seems that the minister and his deputy are not speaking the same language," he said.
He added that it did not make sense for Salahuddin not know about an open tender advertisement for a padi subsidy related contract.
Dr Wee also noted there were some quarters trying to cloud the issue by blaming others.
"The question I raised was why the open tender was cancelled and later given through direct negotiation," he added.
Meanwhile, when met at the lobby, Sim said he would not entertain claims made on social media that there had been attempts to sabotage Salahuddin over the issue.
"Whoever has this (information) should come forward.
"We have to be fair to everyone and not entertain anonymous postings," he added.
Last Thursday (Nov 21), Dr Wee, who is Ayer Hitam MP, raised the issue in Parliament, claiming that an open tender contract had been cancelled.
He claimed this happened after the minister wrote a letter to the Prime Minister on Nov 7 for Nafas to be appointed for padi subsidy related projects for a period of three years beginning in 2020.
Dr Wee claimed that the deal was given through direct negotiation despite Nafas losing out in an initial open tender.
In response, Salahuddin on Friday (Nov 22), admitted he had written a letter to the Prime Minister to award Nafas the contract.
Salahuddin, however, defended his action, saying that he did nothing wrong as the decision on the contract has yet to be finalised by the Finance Ministry.
It was reported by an online portal on Sunday (Nov 24), that a Parti Amanah Negara leader claimed on social media that the ministry's secretary-general had tried to sabotage Salahuddin over the RM1.4bil contract by placing the open tender advertisement without his knowledge.
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