Hisham: I’ve nothing to hide over LCS project


PETALING JAYA: The Defence Ministry (Mindef) is ready to resolve the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) scandal and extend its full cooperation to investigators.

Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said both he and his ministry are ready to cooperate with investigating authorities such as the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), the Governance, Procurement and Government Finance Inquiry Committee (JKSTUPKK) and the forensic audit committee.

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“The leadership in Mindef and I have nothing to hide and in fact, we want this matter to be resolved and (the project to be) continued for the sake of the interest of the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) and the public funds which were spent for the country’s interest,” he said in a statement.

Welcoming Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s announcement on expediting probe into the scandal, Hishammuddin said Mindef will also ensure that the decision will not affect the three matters he had mentioned earlier.

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The three matters are that the government had decided to go ahead with the project in April, as the RMN is in need of the LCS vessels; that wrongdoers will be brought to justice and thirdly, Mindef is also actively carrying out negotiations with vendors, original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and banking institutions as part of the mobilisation plan to ensure that the LCS can be completed.

“It is important for all stakeholders to remain focused on the continuation of the project to ensure that the RMN is equipped with the much needed combat ship as soon as possible,” he said.

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Ismail Sabri had said the Cabinet wants the MACC

to expedite its investigation into the LCS scandal and for the Attorney General to prosecute those responsible if there is proof of wrongdoing.

ALSO READ: Key LCS project documents must be fully declassified, says PAC

In a statement earlier, he said he had met with Attorney General Tan Sri Idrus Harun and MACC chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki after the Cabinet meeting to inform them of the decision on the issue.

Ismail Sabri said the Cabinet also decided for the Investigating Committee on Procurement, Governance and Finance Report headed by former Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang to be made public.

ALSO READ: PM: Cabinet wants LCS probe speeded up, any wrongdoers prosecuted

The Cabinet has also proposed that the forensic audit report on LCS that was conducted in 2019 be declassified.

"However, the views and advice of the Attorney General and the Auditor-General will have to be sought before this can be done," he added.

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