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Jimmy accepts invite for Christmas helicopter joy ride December 17, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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The Borneo Post

TAWAU: Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sabah chief Jimmy Wong has accepted Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming’s invitation to him to take a helicopter ride though he feels the current Sabah Air chairman Datuk Yusoff Kassim is the appropriate person to issue the invitation.

“I was hoping that the current chairman Datuk Yusoff Kassim would issue the invitation. Nevertheless, let us see these two helicopters at the Merdeka town padang on Christmas Day, December 25,” he said.

“We will be at the padang on Christmas morning together with the rakyat of Sabah, the children in particular, for the promised Christmas joy ride by Sabah Air,” he said, adding that he also wants to see Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman and his entire Cabinet to be at the padang in Kota Kinabalu on Christmas Day.

On the clarifications made yesterday by Yusoff and Sabah Air CEO Manu Sasidharan and Datuk Pang Yuk Ming, Jimmy said it showed the organisation was in disarray.

He said: “Three persons made statements and it only showed that no one is in charge of Sabah Air. By having three spokespersons, it is akin to spreading the liabilities.

“In this respect we must revisit the Auditor General Report 2010. Sabah Air was formed in 1975 with the objective of readying air transportation for passengers, cargo and other services in Malaysia.

“Datuk Yusoff Kassim’s contention that Sabah Air is predominantly in the business of saving lives contradict the original objective of the organisation.

“How is Sabah Air going to register profit when they are basically involved in saving lives?”

Jimmy said DAP Sabah never denied the importance of air ambulance service but if the government had laid out a good road network and infrastructure, the need for air ambulance and flying doctor services would be minimal.

He said rural clinics and mobile clinics are more basic and a priority for the rural community.

On Yusoff’s statement that it is prudent to ensure fleet expansion and renewal is carried out on the basis of an upcoming possible contract, Jimmy said the AG Report 2010 stated that the company must properly plan when buying helicopters.

“This came about when Sabah Air had signed a contract to purchase one helicopter model AEW139 at a cost of RM45.45 million in the hope that they will succeed in getting the tender for the Carigali Hess’s production and drilling operation in Kota Bharu.

“The contract was terminated and Sabah Air then purchased the controversial helicopters from Eurocopters for RM33.8 million in October 2010 and January 2011 respectively,” he claimed.

“The AG Report 2010 said that the helicopters had technical problems which were repaired in April 2011. However, the report (dated 24 June 2011) also stated that since the purchase of the two helicopters they were not ready to be utilised and are kept in the hanger,” he said.

“Therefore, it is not wrong to label these expensive helicopters as scrap iron since they were not utilised at all,” he asserted.

“It does not take one to be a rocket scientist to say that two helicopters in the storage are scrap iron. As an aviation man, CEO Sasidharan should be ashamed for not utilising the helicopters to make money for the company. There is nothing political about this issue, it is business,” he said.

“Why should Eurocopters be given the privilege to put the choppers in Lima Show for a ringgit? This is against the very essence of Yusoff’s and Pang’s statements that the helicopters are used for the benefit of the people. Why are they being leased for the show and for demonstration flights? After all, Sabah Air will not get a cent from any successful transaction between Eurocopters and other buyers,” he said.

Jimmy said he wants the government to review the position of Sabah Air as it has moved away from its original objective.

He said Pang’s statement that Sabah Air made a RM1.6 million profit when he was the chairman contradicted the AG Report 2010 which specifically noted Sabah Air’s accumulated losses of RM3.675 million in 2007, RM2,070 million in 2008 and RM4.764 million in 2009.

“Sabah Air has five subsidiaries and only one, Intra-Travel is active. The others including the Wildlife Sanctuary (Borneo) Sdn Bhd are dormant, according to the AG Report 2010,” he said.

Jimmy said DAP Sabah urges the government to review the position of Sabah Air chairman and CEO as they are not sticking to the original objective of the company.

“When I read their press statement, I am not sure if they know what they are doing.

“As a wholly-owned government agency, the State Government should assist Sabah Air to get contracts with the Petronas oil and gas industry.

“Sabah Air should be given priority when it involves Petronas in Sabah in particular. The State Government should also consider expanding Sabah Air to provide air transport covering Borneo and the Southern Philippines,” he said.

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2011/12/15/jimmy-accepts-invite-for-christmas-helicopter-joy-ride/#ixzz1gkZooOQS

Jimmy gets invite to ride chopper

The Borneo Post

KOTA KINABALU: Assistant Infrastructure Development Minister Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming has accepted Sabah DAP chief Jimmy Wong’s challenge to prove the latter wrong on his allegations about the purchase of the Sabah Air helicopters.

Pang during a press conference with Sabah Air Aviation Sdn Bhd chairman Datuk Yusoff Mohd Kassim and the company’s CEO Manu Sasidharan yesterday issued an official invitation to Jimmy for a ride in the Eurocopter AS 355 NP next week.

“I officially invite Sri Tanjung assemblyman Jimmy Wong to ride in the chopper and I will have a Christmas present for him when he comes back from the flight,” the former Sabah Air chairman said in response to Jimmy’s challenge.

Jimmy told reporters on Sunday that he would resign as an elected representative if the state government could prove that his allegations on the purchase of the Sabah Air helicopters were wrong.

“But if I am right, then the State Cabinet should resign,” Jimmy said, adding that he stood by his statement describing the two helicopters purchased by the state government as scrap metal that had never been used.

Jimmy when countering Pang’s criticism to his allegations disclosed that one unit of Eurocopter AS 355 NP was purchased at a price of RM13 million and one unit of Eurocopter EC 145 at a price of RM21 million from Eurocopter Malaysia Sdn Bhd.

He also was of the opinion that the purchase of the two new helicopters was a waste of the people’s money as Sabah Air’s current fleet of eight units of Bell 206 helicopters were not fully utilized.

The money used to purchase the helicopters should have been put to better use such as building roads, improving the water and electricity supply as well as constructing infrastructure for the people in the state, he opined.

He also claimed that since delivery, both helicopters had not generated any revenue flying hours for Sabah Air adding that the AS 355 NP was delivered to Sabah Air in Dec 2010 and EC 145 in Jan 2011.

“In Oct 2011 the EC 145 was leased to Eurocopter for demonstration flights and static display in West Malaysia for RM 1 only. The One Ringgit Malaysia lease agreement between Sabah Air Aviation Sdn Bhd and Eurocopter Malaysia Sdn Bhd was signed by CEO and Director of Operation on Sept 30,” he alleged.

“As Sabahans have yet to see any of these helicopters, I challenge the state government to give the rakyat a good Christmas present by putting the two machines on display. The government should also consider operating charity flights on the helicopters for children on that day.

“I also want the Sabah Chief Minister and his three deputies as well as assistant Infrastructure Development Minister Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming to accompany the children on the charity flights and if you want me to be there, I will,” he said.

Pang also refuted Jimmy’s allegation that Sabah Air had made a loss in 2010.

“I was the chairman then and I can tell you now that Sabah Air made RM1.6 million net profit. I do not know what he meant by not making profit,” he added.

Explaining about the EMS service, Pang used the 101010 bus accident tragedy in Peninsular Malaysia as an example on how important swift emergency service was in saving lives.

One of the contributing factors to the number of fatalities in the accident was that the EMS could not get to the victims on time, he said.

“In Sabah we realize that we lack this facility because in rescue service, the first hour is very critical as it could mean the difference between life and death. Imagine this scenario, an expectant mother in Keningau has complications, how can she endure the two-hour ambulance ride?

“Wouldn’t it be better if she was airlifted to the nearest medical facility for emergency treatment? It was because if this reason that I personally went to see the Health Minister about three years ago to explain about the EMS and the need for it.

“Sabah Air realized this three years ago, which is why we have been pushing for this and that is why we bought this equipment, not just because we want to buy it. Now if we can convince the federal government to give this budget which they have now allocated, I don’t see who loses here,” he stressed.

Pang added that he was emotional about the issue because Sabah Air has very good people who had worked passionately for the past three years to create awareness about EMS in this country.

“We have someone who come in and say we bought this useless thing…this is a very irresponsible thing for a YB to do,” he said.

Meanwhile Manu pointed out that Sabah Air has business in countries like Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines and Singapore, among others.

It was also the first choice of the United Nation for its Aceh rehabilitation program after the tsunami disaster struck the island.

“Sabah Air was the first choice and spent the longest time there,” he said adding that UN picked up contractors who they were confident to do the jobs.

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2011/12/14/jimmy-gets-invite-to-ride-chopper/#ixzz1gkalLxa1

Assemblyman to resign if allegations on purchase of choppers proven wrong

The Borneo Post

KOTA KINABALU: Sri Tanjung assemblyman, Jimmy Wong said that he will resign as an elected representative if the state government can prove that his allegations on the purchase of the Sabah Air helicopters were wrong.

“But if I am right, then the State Cabinet should resign,” the Sabah DAP liaison chief told reporters here yesterday.

Wong maintained that he stood by his statement describing the two helicopters purchased by the State government as scrap metal that had never been used.

Speaking at a press conference here, Wong claimed that Sabah Air Aviation Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned company of the State Government, purchased two new units of helicopters to provide for the Health Department’s flying doctor and medivac services contract.

“One unit of Eurocopter AS 355 NP was purchased at a price of RM13 million and one unit of Eurocopter EC 145 at a price of RM21 million from Eurocopter Malaysia Sdn Bhd,” Wong alleged when countering criticism to his allegations by the former chairman of Sabah Air, Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming.

Wong also said that the purchase of  the two helicopters was a waste of the people’s money as Sabah Air’s current fleet of eight Bell 206 helicopters are not fully utilised.

The money used to purchase the helicopters should have been put to better use such as building roads, improving water and electricity supplies as well as constructing infrastructure for the people in the state, he opined.

He also claimed that since the delivery, both helicopters have not generated any revenue flying hours for Sabah Air. Wong disclosed that the AS 355 NP was delivered to Sabah Air in Dec 2010 and the EC 145 was delivered in Jan 2011.

“In Oct 2011, the EC 145 was leased to Eurocopter for demonstration flights and static display in West Malaysia for RM 1.00 only. The one ringgit lease agreement between Sabah Air Aviation Sdn Bhd and Eurocopter Malaysia Sdn Bhd was signed by the CEO and the director of operation on Sept 30,” he alleged.

“As Sabahans have yet to see any of these helicopters, I challenge the State government to give the rakyat a good Christmas present by putting the two machines on display. The government should also consider operating charity flights on the helicopters for children on that day.”

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2011/12/12/assemblyman-to-resign-if-allegations-on-purchase-of-choppers-proven-wrong/#ixzz1gkbaVlSS

Review position of Sabah Air, Bosses: DAP

Daily Express

Kota Kinabalu: DAP Sabah Chairman Jimmy Wong said the government should review the position of Sabah Air, as well as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, as they have moved away from its original objective.

Wong, who is Sri Tanjung Assemblyman, said this in response to Sabah Air Chairman Datuk Yusoff Kassim, CEO Manu Sasidharan and former chairman Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming who held a joint press conference at its office Tuesday to counter his earlier allegations about the company.

Wong, who accepted Pang’s invitation for a helicopter ride although he feels that Pang has no locus standi to do so, said the clarifications made by the three showed how disarrayed the organisation is.

“It only shows that no one is in charge of Sabah Air.

By having three spokespersons is akin to spreading the liabilities.

Re-visiting the Auditor-General Report 2010, Wong said Sabah Air was formed in 1975 with the objective of readying air transportation for passengers, cargo and other services in the country.

He said Yusoff’s contention that Sabah Air is predominantly in the business of saving lives contradicted the original objective of its establishment.

“How is Sabah Air going to register profit when they are basically involved in saving lives? DAP Sabah never denied the importance of air ambulance but if the government has laid out a good road network and infrastructure, the use of air ambulance and flying doctor services will be minimised.

What happened to our rural clinics and mobile clinics?

These are more basic and a priority for the rural community,” he said.

“How on earth could the people of Sabah benefit from the air service and improve their standard of living through better technology and facilities?

It looks like the Chairman has been watching and influenced by the rescue operations in the United StatesÉI urge Yusoff to go back to the original objective of Sabah Air,” he added.

Yusoff had said fleet expansion and renewal was carried out on the basis of an up-coming possible contract, said Wong, adding that the A-G Report 2010 stated that the company must properly plan when buying helicopters.

“This came about when Sabah Air has signed a contract to purchase one helicopter model AEW139 at a cost of RM45.45million in the hope that they would succeed in getting the tender for the Carigali Hess’ production and drilling operation in Kota Bharu,” he said.

The contract was terminated and Sabah Air then purchased the controversial helicopters from Eurocopter for RM33.8mil in October 2010 and January 2011 respectively, he said, adding the A-G Report 2010 had stated that the helicopters have technical problems which were repaired in April 2011.

However, he said the report (dated June 24, 2011) also stated that since the purchase of the two helicopters they were not ready to be utilised and are kept in the hanger.

“It is therefore not wrong to label these expensive helicopters as scrap iron since they were not utilised at all. It does not take one to be a rocket scientist to say that two helicopters in the storage are scrap iron,” he said.

Wong said CEO Sasidharan, as an aviation man, should be ashamed for not utilising the helicopters to make money for the company.

“There is nothing political about this issue, it is just business.

Why should Eurocopter be given the privilege to put the choppers in the Lima show for a ringgit? This is against the very essence of Yusoff’s and Pang’s statements that the helicopters are used for the benefit of the people.

Why are they been leased for the show and for demonstration flights?

After all, Sabah Air will not get a cent from any successful transaction between Eurocopter and other buyers,” he charged.

Wong said Pang’s statement that Sabah Air made RM1.6mil when he was the chairman contradicted with the A-G Report 2010 which specifically noted Sabah Air’s accumulated losses of RM3.675 million (2007), RM2.070 million (2008) and RM4.764 million (2009).

Sabah Air has five subsidiaries and only one, Intra-Travel is active.

The others including the Wildlife Sanctuary (Borneo) Sdn Bhd are dormant, according to the A-G Report 2010.

“DAP Sabah urges the government to review the position of the Sabah Air Chairman and CEO as they are not sticking to the original objective of the company. When I read their press statement, I am not sure if they know what they are doing,” he said.

As a wholly-owned government agency, he said the State government should assist Sabah Air to get contracts with the Petronas oil and gas industry.

“Sabah Air should be given priority when it involves Petronas in Sabah in particular.

The State government should also consider expanding Sabah Air to provide air transport covering Borneo and the Southern Philippines,” said Wong.

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