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Allegation of power abuse in down-scaled ECRL given to MACC

TheMole
Written by TheMole

KUALA LUMPUR — March 30, 2020: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has received a complaint alleging abuse of power in the scaled-down East Coast Rail Link project.

Without disclosing the involvement of any individual, MACC chief commissioner Datuk Seri Azam Baki said they would study the complaint before carrying out further investigations.

A source told Bernama TV that the complainant, among others, asked MACC to investigate an allegation of inflated cost of the project, which it said should be RM30 billion instead of RM44 billion. 

The source, in referring to a media report, said the project which was cancelled in January 2019, got back on track in April that year after the government decided to resume the project with China Communication Construction Company Ltd. at a reduced sum. The original total cost agreed to by the previous Barisan Nasional government was RM65.5 billion.

The Edge Markets mentioned that Tun Daim Zainuddin, former finance minister and chairman of the Council of Eminent Persons formed by the previous Pakatan Harapan, was named in the allegation. Daim was entrusted by Pakatan to renegotiate the original package.

The allegation claimed that the new plan should only cost RM30 billion since certain things were excluded, among them five stations on the Gombak-Klang route.

This means the new plan is RM14 billion costlier despite the reduction of some things.

The ECRL project resumed after an additional agreement was signed by Malaysia Rail Link Sdn. Bhd. and CCCC in April 2019. The scaling down also means a new alignment that shortens the total length by 40 kilometres from 688.

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