MACC: No legal issue with awarding of DRT contract

KUALA LUMPUR: There is no legal issue with the awarding of a Selangor government contract to a company linked to a Pakatan Harapan minister’s husband, says the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

Its chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki (pic) said this was because the project had been awarded by the state government itself and not by the Youth and Sports Ministry helmed by Hannah Yeoh.

“According to the law, there is no wrongdoing if a person receives a contract or any type of benefit from an agency or entity that is not related to them.

“In Yeoh’s husband’s case, based on what I have read from media reports, he received a contract from the Selangor government. Yeoh is the Youth and Sports Minister.

“There is no direct relationship between the ministry and the Selangor government, meaning the project that was awarded is from a separate entity (not under Yeoh).

“As such, I don’t see any wrongdoing with the awarding of the contract,” he told reporters here yesterday.

Previously, it was reported that the Selangor government had appointed a company linked to Yeoh’s husband to provide on-demand transportation services in the state.

The company, Asia Mobility Technologies Sdn Bhd, was founded in 2018 by Yeoh’s husband, Ramachandran Muniandy, who is its chief executive officer.

In a statement issued by its board of directors on Friday, the company said the appointment was only valid for nine months.

It said the appointment also required extensive investment from both service providers in terms of procuring vehicles, hiring drivers and further development of the technology powering the service.

Asia Mobiliti said the Demand-Responsive Transit (DRT) contract was awarded to not one but two different companies by the Selangor government and explained the reason why there was no open tender.

“An open tender in this situation of a highly-specialised new service with only two qualified companies in Malaysia would have created a monopoly.

“This would have stifled competitiveness and robbed the state of the opportunity to pilot the service in a real-world setting and assess the performance of the service providers over a reasonable period of time,” it said.

Asia Mobiliti said it was a pioneering DRT provider in Malaysia and the first to be licensed by the Land Public Transport Agency (Apad) to operate a “bus-on-demand” service.

“As the pioneers of DRT in Malaysia with Trek Rides, we conducted a pilot of the service in September 2021 in Petaling Jaya for relevant stakeholders and clients,” it said in the statement.

State executive councillor for investment, trade and mobility Ng Sze Han had previously said the two companies involved in the contract – Asia Mobility Technologies and Badan Bas Coach Sdn Bhd – were chosen as they had the necessary credentials for the job.

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