Navy welcomes PAC’s counsel on LCS project

KUALA LUMPUR: The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) welcomes the Public Accounts Committee’s (PAC) recommendations in connection with the acquisition of the littoral combat ship (LCS) project.

In hoping for the best outlook for the LCS project, the navy said the vessels are critical acquisitions in preserving the country’s sovereignty and security.

“The navy’s combat capabilities must be in line with the geostrategic and geopolitical security landscape development in the region.

“RMN is grateful for the government’s decision to resume the project. We view it as the right decision and it shows the government’s attentiveness and concern,” the navy said in a statement yesterday.

The force also supports investigations into any leakage in the project, it added.

“We call for prompt action to be taken against those responsible (for any leakage),” the navy said.

As the end user, the navy said the delay in the project has negatively impacted not only the navy armada’s combat capabilities but the morale of all officers and personnel as well, who need the LCS to perform their duties effectively.

“We urge all parties to support the project to preserve the nation’s sovereignty and security,” RMN said.

It was previously reported that RM1.4bil worth of government funds intended for the multibillion-ringgit LCS project signed in 2014 were diverted for other purposes.

So far, not even one of the ships is completed, although five should have been delivered by this month, PAC revealed in Parliament.

Another RM255mil worth of LCS equipment, or 15% of the RM1.7bil worth, which was kept in store for the project, is now obsolete.

These were among the findings contained in the bipartisan committee’s 250-page report that was tabled in the Dewan Rakyat on Aug 4.

Of the RM1.4bil, RM400mil was used to repay previous debts incurred under the New Generation Patrol Vessel (NGPV) project, RM305mil was used for an integration facility in Cyberjaya, and another RM700mil was a cost overrun that exceeded the LCS contract ceiling.

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