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LCS Scandal: Najib, Zahid Involved Since 2007 And 2010 Respectively

Despite their denials, a recently declassified report has revealed that UMNO’s Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had knowledge and were involved in the Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) project.

The report by the Special Investigation Committee on Public Governance, Procurement and Finance revealed that Najib had knowledge since November 2007 while Zahid had been involved at least since July 2010.

Najib had knowledge since November 2007

Zahid had been informed since July 2010

The report also attached a letter from former navy chief and then Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) managing director, Tan Sri Ahmad Ramli Mohd Nor to Zahid Hamidi on 8 July 2010.

In the letter, Ahmad Ramli asked Ahmad Zahid, the then Defence Minister for a letter of intent (LOI) on the project.

Ahmad Ramli, who is now facing three criminal breach of trust charges, said in the letter that BNS had made plans to begin construction for the LCS project which would take two years. As such, a mandate from the government is needed to secure the original equipment manufacturers’ (OEM) confidence to commit to the project.

The letter was signed by Zahid with a note that reads “SUB perolehan, sila laksanakan” (under-secretary of procurement division, please execute).

For the record, Zahid Hamidi had on 6 August dismissed allegations linking him to the mismanagement of the LCS project.

The UMNO president said he was not the Defence Minister at the time the project was awarded and only held the portfolio from April 2009 to May 2013.

The investigation into the fiasco is led by former Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang.

The LCS controversy has gained momentum recently after the PAC revealed that none of the ships had been completed, although five should have been delivered by August 2022.

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

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



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