MOF to be called to explain Lada’s huge losses

KUALA LUMPUR: The Finance Ministry will be called up on Nov 30 to explain the Auditor-General’s Report 2022 findings on the Langkawi Development Authority’s (Lada) management of property development, says the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

PAC chairman Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin said the committee’s proceedings would focus on, among others, misappropriation of funds, power abuse, wastage and negligence.

“The PAC will announce, from time to time, other topics of its proceedings,” she told a press conference in Parliament here yesterday.

The committee, she said, had arranged its schedule until December.

The Auditor-General’s Report 2022, which was tabled in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday, found a RM3.19mil land lease payment from St Regis Hotel Langkawi to Lada was overdue up to Dec 31, 2022.

This was among several weaknesses discovered during the audit on Lada, which also found that no consideration was received in terms of shares or leasehold land income amounting to RM8.3mil for the Perkampungan Tok Senik Resort project on the land that had been leased.

Press call: Mas Ermieyati (third from left) speaking at the press conference yesterday With her is Auditor-General Datuk Wan Suraya Wan Mohd Radzi (second from left). — BernamaPress call: Mas Ermieyati (third from left) speaking at the press conference yesterday With her is Auditor-General Datuk Wan Suraya Wan Mohd Radzi (second from left). — Bernama

The report said these weaknesses posed a risk of Lada losing income amounting to RM11.49mil as well as the leasehold land.

“Land lease agreements should be properly and effectively managed in order to guard the government’s interest in private development projects and to avoid the risk of losing revenue and property,” said the report.

The report also found the Chenang tourism jetty was inoperable, not maintained, had severe damage, and breached the management and operating contract.

“Monitoring and maintenance have also not been done on Restoran 1Malaysia, which ceased operations since 2018, although the management and operating contract is still in force,” the report said, adding that Lada’s assets in these two properties had suffered damage and failed to obtain the highest return in investment.

The report recommended Lada improve its governance of investment to ensure they were efficiently managed and provided appropriate returns.

The audit was deemed important as a total of RM408.22mil had been approved and RM255.2mil spent so far for the implementation of 20 development projects under the 11th and 12th Malaysia Plan towards developing tourism infrastructure and public facilities.

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