KUALA LUMPUR: The list of 101 government projects worth RM6.61bil said to be awarded by the Pakatan Harapan government via direct negotiations were mainly projects initiated or a continuation from the previous Barisan Nasional administration, says former finance minister Lim Guan Eng.
During its 22-month tenure in Putrajaya, only RM352mil of the RM6.61bil projects were initiated by Pakatan, he said.
“The remaining RM6.258bil were projects that were initiated or continued from Barisan’s time that had to be continued by Pakatan,” said Lim in a press conference at the Parliament media room yesterday.
Also present were former Pakatan ministers Mohamad Sabu, Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, Yeo Bee Yin, M. Kulasegaran, Dr Xavier Jayakumar, other deputy ministers and MPs.
Lim said the list recently revealed by Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Aziz included five projects worth RM4.48bil that were carried out by the Barisan government before Pakatan took over.
Among them were the phase two Klang Valley Double Track project (KVDT2), offered to the company at a price tag of RM5.265bil by Barisan through direct negotiation.
“After Pakatan took over, we found the amount offered was too high, so the Cabinet decided to cancel the contract,” said Lim.
However, he added that the contractor company pleaded with the government and comprehensive negotiations were held.
“The Pakatan government decided to continue with the project with a lower price of RM4.475bil, a saving of RM790mil.
“This also helped to manage any legal tussle between the company and the government so the Finance Minister (Zafrul) should praise Pakatan as we helped to save money,” claimed Lim.
He said the other four projects under the Ministry of International Trade and Industries worth RM8.18mil were done in April 2018.
Lim also said that from the 101 projects revealed, about 30 projects worth RM1.753bil were implemented during Barisan’s time, and many were services or supply-related contracts that needed certain expertise or were due to monopoly.
One example was during the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where the then Communications and Multimedia Ministry under Pakatan announced that the government would not bear the RM29.9mil cost to air the matches, he said.