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Sabah Air’s Eurocopter AS 355 NP and EC 145 without Operations Specification Certificate? December 20, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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Following my question based on the Auditor General findings on the purchase of the Eurocopter AS 355 NP for RM13 million and Eurocopter EC 145 for RM21 million by Sabah Air, I received many information and feedbacks from concern public in my blog and email.

As Datuk Pang Yuk Ming said I was being senseless, I would like to ask him is it true that Sabah Air Aviation Chairman Datuk Yusof and CEO Manu with one senior staff were seen rushing to Kuala Lumpur trying to get  both the EC145 and AS355NP new choppers  register onto Sabah Air Aviation’s “OPERATIONS SPECIFICATION  CERTIFICATE” from the Jambatan Penerbangan Awam in Putra Jaya on December 6, 2011(Friday).

Without the ‘OPERATION SPECIFICATION CERTIFICATE’  in place which should be kept with other document in the chopper, Sabah Air Aviation cannot use the choppers for revenue flights for example for public charters.

I was informed that the AS 355 NP is not only without the OPERATIONS SPECIFICATION CERTIFICATE but also without the “AIRWORTHY CERTIFICATE” not renewed since expired about a month ago.

The AS 355 NP is therefore  not allow to fly any passenger with an expired Airworthy Certificate . The chopper may only fly under special condition only for example for ‘Flight Test’ to qualify for the Airworthy Certificate renewal.

If this is true, how dare Sabah Air Aviation wants to invite me to flying in the AS355NP on December 16, 2010 (Friday)

Is it true the EC 145 carry the registration mark “9M-CMD” and that EC 145 is also with VVIP seats configuration and the Chief Minister can use this expensive chopper to travel on the EC 145.

Is it true that “9M” signifies Aircraft  registered in Malaysia and follow the running three alphabets and one can choose special registration mark. I am told that Sabah Air specially selected 9M-CMD to signify Chief Minister Department.

Can I, as the people representative, visit Sabah Air and see the Original copy of the OPERATION SPECIFICATION CERTIFICATE that the EC 145 Registration mark 9M-CMD and AS355 NP Registration mark 9M-MOH are registered in the Sabah Air’s  Operations Specification Certificate.

I do not want to be shown a photo-copy like what NCT did when showing the photo copy of their expensive AS350 which I was informed is already off registered from Malaysia register few months ago.

I would also like to know if NCT will allow me to charter all their three helicopters for the PBS (Parti Bersatu Sabah) and Kota Kinabalu Kapitan who tried to defend NCT. I would like Frankie Chai, the spokesman for NCT to show me the original copy of AS355NP Airworthy Certificate.

Is it true that only one pilot was sent for the AS355 NP training and not three as claimed and this pilot was not sent for the EC145 training.

My information is that three pilots were sent for EC 145 training, one had resigned and at this moment only one can fly as the other pilot currency to fly the EC145 has expired.

I hope the invitation to fly on Christmas Day for a joy ride with children is still on. I and the people would like to see the Sabah Air two new choppers and NCT’s three choppers on that day with all the original certificates in order unless both have something to hide from the people.

Let me remind you that IN THE AUDITOR GENERAL REPORT Sabah Air Aviation Sdn. Bhd. (Sabah Air) was established in 1975 under the Company Act 1965 and has shares (allowed) totalling RM100 million and paid up capital RM40.87 million. Sabah Air is owned by the Sabah Government which holds RM31 million shares (75.9 per cent) and Sabah Energy Corporation Sdn. Bhd with RM9.87 million (24.1 per cent) shares. Sabah Energy Corporation Sdn. Bhd. Is a wholly owned State Government company. Sabah Air has three direct (3) subsidiary companies and two (2) indirect subsidiary companies.

The main objective of Sabah Air is in air transportation service and look after planes. Services provided are oil support services, aerial survey and photography, filming, heavy lifting/underslung job, flying doctor service, power work, executive charter and aerial crop spraying & application. Sabah Air has two (2) King Air type planes and a Nomad and eleven (11) helicopters which are eight (8) Bell type, two (2) Eurocopter and one (1) Augusta.

The Auditor General found that in general Sabah Air is capable to provide air service and look after planes as its establishment objective, however, Sabah Air’s income from 2007 to 2009 are not consistent. Sabah Air recorded clean profit for 2007 and 2009 while for 2009 recorded loss.  For 2007 to 2009, income for 2007 was RM18.24 million and increased to RM27.51 million in 2008, however, the income reduce to 20.07 million in 2009 and for 2009 Sabah Air spent RM2.70 more from its income. The 2007 high income was due to the sales of two units of helicopter/plane totalled EM8.41 million, while the higher income for 2008 was due to high demand during the election.  Sabah Air’s profit before tax reduced to RM2.78 million for 2007 and RM1.82 million for 2008 and for 2009 a loss of RM2.71 before tax.

That is why I questioned the RM1 lease as it did not make money for the people of Sabah.

Sabah Air is in the ‘red’ and is not making money in 2009, so why leased at RM1.

 

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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.

Dap Sabah maintains stand on helicopters December 17, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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The Borneo Post

KOTA KINABALU: Democratic Action Party (DAP) Sabah maintains that the two helicopters bought by Sabah Air are useless as they are just sitting in the hangar and not benefiting the people of Sabah.

Its chairman, Jimmy Wong, said DAP Sabah was never wrong when it said the two expensive Eurocopter helicopters, AS355NP and EC145, were nothing but scrap iron.

“Sabah Air chairman Datuk Yusoff Kassim said DAP’s statement was an outrageous lie and an irresponsible accusation that tarnished the good name of Sabah Air while Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming criticised me for labelling the choppers as scrap iron.

“Sabah Air CEO Manu Sasidharan went at length to say about Sabah Air’s business in countries like Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines and Singapore among others. He also said a helicopter sitting in a hanger does not make it a scrap metal and being an aviation man all these years he finds it quite blasphemous.

“We would like to reemphasize that the two helicopters are scrap iron as until today they have not earned any revenue for the company. They are parked in the hanger and while the EC145 was put on show and demonstration at the Lima airshow in Langkawi for the seller, Eurocopter Malaysia Sdn Bhd, it was with a lease of just one Ringgit per day.

“How could Sabah Air save RM844,729.21 from this deal (as claimed)? This is called penny wise pound foolish. Eurocopters could have spent more if they have to bring in and then ship back their helicopters to their country of origin. Who are Yusoff, Pang and Manu trying to fool?” said Wong at a press conference here yesterday.

Wong had previously questioned the logic behind the purchase of the two aircrafts, which he claimed to be underused and a waste of public fund.

He had also questioned the capability of Sabah Air and its business officers as a business entity, attracting immediate reaction from its CEO and chairman as well as the Youth and Sports Minister Pang, who was previously the chairman of the company.

Manu in his response had offered to meet face-to-face with anyone who actually made the allegations minus the political issues, and discuss the technical side of Sabah Air’s operation.

For this, Jimmy said he was more than happy to meet Manu and suggested the latter provide the date, venue and time for the meeting.

On the Christmas joy ride offered by Sabah Air to him, he said he had accepted the invitation and hope it would not only be for him but the air service company would offer the same to the public to allow them to see for themselves that the two expensive machines were actually in good condition and could be used.

“Not only this will allow Sabahans to view these two magnificent flying machines but to check their suitability as claimed. It would be interesting to see if the houses around the present helicopter landing site, for example in Kampung Buayan in Moyog, can withstand the power of these machines during landing and takeoff,” he said.

On the Sabah Air’s financial situation, Wong said Yusoff, Pang and Manu could easily defend themselves by publishing the Sabah Air audited account for 2010, where it made RM1.6 million profit.

However, he said it must not be forgotten that Sabah Air still has accumulated losses of over RM3 million.

“We must focus on the subject matter which is the two new helicopters. We would specifically like to see the flying hours by these two helicopters, who use their services and the revenue generated. This will make it easier for the trio to justify the purchase of the two choppers.

“The three must also be reminded that the Auditor-General’s Report 2010 has stated that Sabah Air had incurred accumulated losses to the tune of more than RM4.7 million in 2009. The claim by Pang that the company made a profit during his chairmanship does not mean anything if the company continues to be in the red.

“Sabah Air is a losing entity unless otherwise proven. Yusoff who was formerly the permanent secretary in the Finance Ministry should be well versed with the financial situation of Sabah Air,” he said.

Wong went on to suggest that Yusoff should study the AG’s report diligently and find ways and means to turn the company around before it reached a point of no turning back.

He noted that there were five subsidiaries in Sabah Air and except for the travel agency, Intra-Travel, the rest are dormant.

He said DAP would enlighten the rakyat further on the performance of the company based on the latest available financial statements, and discuss about the other financial mismanagements of the company as highlighted in the Auditor General’s Report.

As the chairman, he said Yusoff should ensure Sabah Air was given contracts not only on the flying doctor and medivac services but also services required in the oil and gas industry.

He added that Sabah Air should be given priority to all contracts requiring their services in the Petronas oil and gas industry in Sabah, suggesting that the Chief Minister who is also the Finance Minister to give these contracts to Sabah Air.

“As the chairman, Yusoff should be pro-active and alert to the ever-changing dynamics in air transportation. The MAS-AirAsia merger and the slow decline of Firefly should spark excitement in Sabah Air. An opportunity is opening for Sabah Air to go big in the airline business. The Borneo, Philippines and Indonesian markets are big enough for Sabah Air as a start,” he said.

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2011/12/16/dap-sabah-maintains-stand-on-helicopters/#ixzz1gkYuM2Qe

Sabah Air clarifies purchase of two helicopters December 16, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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The Borneo Post

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Air Aviation Sdn Bhd chairman Datuk Yussof Mohd Kassim has issued a press statement to counter allegations by Sri Tanjung assemblyman cum Sabah DAP chairman Jimmy Wong’s allegations about two of its helicopters, the EC145 and AS355NP.

Jimmy described the two helicopters as ‘scrap metal’ and the purchase was a waste of the people’s money. He also claimed that the aircraft were not suitable for rural areas as they would ‘take of the roof of houses’ if they tried to land in the villages.

Yussof in his statement that he read out to reporters yesterday said that before the acquisition of the EC145 and AS355NP helicopters, Sabah Air used to operate one of the oldest fleets in the region.

The management was mindful of the issues which led to a program to renew and modernize its current fleet of aircraft to ensure that its products and services were competitive, he said, adding that the company always ensured continuous improvement in all aspects of the company’s operation.

It was also prudent to ensure that fleet expansion and renewal was carried out on the basis of an up-coming possible contract. The decision to renew its fleet of helicopters and the decision to purchase Eurocopter EC145 and AS355NP are that of the Board of Directors of Sabah Air in a series of discussion and evaluation of the various types of aircraft with consultation with the technical team.

“It is purely a commercial and strategic business decision,” he added.

“As in all commercial dealings, Sabah Air needs to position and improve its chances to move forward. In doing so, the company must have the right tools and equipment to bid for tenders that are opened to the company.

“The Medical Services Contract was opening for tender as soon as the current contract expires. The new contract specification requires the successful contractor to use the next generation helicopters (e.g. Twin Engine Requirement); keeping in mind safety as a primary concern. The then fleet of Sabah Air was no longer suitable to bid for this contract. Hence the said helicopters were procured to meet the requirement of the end user,” he disclosed.

According to him, the AS355NP and EC145 helicopters are twin engine helicopters and unique to Sabah Air as the company has always been operating Bell helicopters in the past. The Bell helicopters are single engine helicopters.

As a matter of fact, Sabah Air’s EC145 helicopter was the first of such model being acquired in Malaysia, he added.

“The accusation that the EC145 cannot land in rural areas is an irresponsible statement. As a prudent operator, all measures and steps are taken, considering the safety aspects of the people, to choose a suitable landing point and not otherwise that will pose a threat to the safety of the people and their properties, as alleged.

“We cannot just simply land where we like; there are landing provision made by authorities and there are no cases of rooftops being blown off,” he said.

He also countered Jimmy’s accusation that there was no pilot who flew the AS355NP as another misinformed accusation as the said helicopter was flown in from Kuala Lumpur by Sabah Air’s pilot in 2010.

“The resignation of the said pilot from the company relates to a personal decision at his own accord because he was offered better terms elsewhere. It is a normal scenario in any commercial entities; helicopter pilots being a very scarce profession nowadays.

“Nevertheless, it should be noted that such scarceness of the said resources would not ensure guaranteed employment in any Aviation Organization if the person is found to have violated the company’s safety code,” he stressed.

“The statement that the said helicopters are scrap metal is an outrageous lie and irresponsible accusation that tarnishes the good name of Sabah Air. The helicopters were originally flown in all the way from Kuala Lumpur, and was also recently flown back to Kuala Lumpur and then to Langkawi for LIMA `11. This is ample proof that the said helicopters are definitely airworthy for revenue flights.

“With respect to the allegation of wasting people’s money for purchasing the helicopters, Yang Berhormat Jimmy Wong is reminded that the purchase does not deprive the interest of other needs of Sabahans with respect to state fund provisioning for building roads and basic infrastructure.

“As such the people’s interest and welfare at large are not affected. On the contrary, it improves the communication in the rural areas which are not accessible by road. In the event of emergency, life and death situation, air transport is the only solution.

“The people of Sabah will benefit from the service which will definitely improve their standard of living through better technology and facilities. In conclusion, Sabah Air is predominantly in the business of saving lives,” he said.

Sabah Air CEO Manu Sasidharan when explaining about the leasing of EC145 to Eurocopter for the LIMA air show at a token nominal sum of RM1said the company had decided to send the aircraft to Langkawi but the cost involved was quite heavy.

“So we approached Eurocopter and parked the aircraft under their booths for about three months. To do that we need to do a lease agreement because when you do it under a lease agreement, the cost of insurance will be passed to the temporary holder.

“The cost of taking the aircraft to LIMA and all other associated costs is RM844,729.21. The advantage to Sabah Air was that we saved that amount as it was borne by Eurocopter for that nominal RM1 transfer for three months on a transfer agreement.

“The agreement also stated that whatever cost that we incurred in terms of our crew during the transfer to KK-KL-Langkawi they will pay for it, they will basically maintain the aircraft for this period of time at their cost, they have hangered the aircraft at Subang at their cost, the cost of exhibiting at Langkawi was at their cost and the cost of participating we didn’t pay as exhibitor, we went in as trade show visitor,” he said.

On top of that, Sabah Air is given the opportunity to display and promote the potential services the helicopter has at the LIMA air show under the bigger flagship of Eurocopter. It is a business strategy and no participation fee is involved which would have been a significant cost to the company.

Being a new fleet and first of its kind in Malaysia, promotional efforts are actively made to introduce such new helicopters to the users especially the emergency medical services (EMS), search and rescue, and other utility roles which are new in Malaysia.

The participation in LIMA had successfully attracted potential users especially government departments.

Manu also explained that Sabah Air has 11 pilots and nine are helicopter pilots.

The aircraft, he said were bought with a purpose, adding that the flying doctors service was the next contract and had to be operated on a twin engine concept, so Sabah Air had to buy a new chopper.

“And then there was another concept in the emergency medical services (EMS) which is not being implemented in Malaysia yet. Sabah Air is leading that effort with the Ministry of Health and Sabah Health Department to come up with the protocol on the service.

“At this stage when we don’t have the contracts yet, so we have nominal pilots who are trained on these aircraft. When the contract starts, we have a plan to train more pilots to meet the requirements of the contract. So the allegation that we do not have pilots for this type of aircraft is completely not true,” he stressed.

Manu added that a helicopter sitting in a hanger does not make it scrap metal.

“Being an aviation man all these years I find that blasphemous. In fact I am willing to answer face to face whoever made the allegations, minus the politics, purely on the technical side and we are willing to give him a presentation on the chopper itself, take him on a ride to see Kota Kinabalu,” he said.

He also brushed aside any doubts that the helicopters are not in flying condition as the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (DCAM) has issued certificate of airworthiness for these two aircraft.

DCAM will not issue the certificate unless and until they have irrefutable proof that these aircraft are safe machines, he stressed.

On the allegation of the helicopters not being able to land in the rural areas, Sabah Air as a responsible flight operator which is also the longest serving operator in the country at 37 years, does not go flying into a location blindly.

“We will have people to identify a preconceived determined location for landing, we check the weather, we will have a person on the ground, the community leader in the village knows and they will control the crowd on the ground,” he pointed out.

Assemblyman to resign if allegations on purchase of choppers proven wrong December 16, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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http://www.theborneopost.com

 

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.”

 

‘RM388m can build 9,200 low-cost houses’ August 23, 2011

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse, Cabinet.
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by Free Malaysia Today

KOTA KINABALU: Opposition assemblyman Jimmy Wong is set to table a motion in the coming State Legislative Assembly to debate a plan to build in the poorest state in Malaysia a state administration centre costing several hundred million ringgit.

The Sabah DAP chairman said he is objecting to the RM388-million centre because it goes against the government’s “people first” slogan and will bring no real benefit to the people.

“This big sum of money can be put to better use such as for infrastructure… in Sri Tanjung itself there is an urgent need for funds for flood mitigation, dam projects and the Tawau-Kalabakan-Sapulut road.

“I want to ask the Sabah government: is it ministers first or people first?” he said, adding that he hoped to get a favorable response for the motion.

He said it must be discussed and studied more closely because it involves the interest of the people of Sabah and has received objections from the public.

He suggested that the administration centre be based at the Sabah Foundation and Innoprise buildings as “both buildings belong to the people”.

“Do the people need another building or is it because the Chief Minister (Musa Aman) wants a building credited to his name?

“Let me remind the government that Sabah is still the poorest state in Malaysia and this money should be used to help the people.

“If a low-cost house costs RM42,000, the RM388 million can be used to build 9,200 units of low-cost houses for the hardcore poor housing programme.

“It can also benefit 1,290 elderly people under the ‘Bantuan Orang Tua’. Meet the basic needs of the people first… the building can come later.

“Can the government guarantee that with the Sabah Administrative Centre, things will get better for the people?

“Personally I don’t think so,” he said.

‘Lacking basic needs’

Wong wants the funds for the building to be used to solve urban congestion problems in Tawau.

“A coastal highway through Kampung Titingan to Mile 4, Apas Road, is needed and the people are waiting for one to be constructed.

“In fact, every time a meeting at the State Legislative Assembly is held, representatives of the people apply for funds for basic infrastructure.

“It goes to show that we are lacking in the basic needs of the people.”

Wong also proposed that the money be ploughed into efforts to increase rice production in Sabah, which could, in turn, reduce rice imports.

“The government has said it wanted to achieve the target of 60% of domestic rice production.

“Has the government achieved the target? Has the government successfully made Kota Belud and Kota Marudu a major rice producer in Sabah?

“This RM388 million can make it a reality.”

Those against the expensive project say the money should be used for more urgent things such as infrastructure repair, schools, hospitals, piped water and electricity, which the state is lacking.

Sex and money for freedom March 19, 2009

Posted by wong jimmy in Abuse.
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I could not believe it when told that immigration officer abuse power for sex and money, but it seems there are many complaints and allegations that could not be denied.

 

As the complaints I have received are serious, I called for immediate investigation on allegation of power abuse by immigration officer on foreign women and employers.

 

I had received complaints from women that they were pressured to having sex in return for freedom while being detained at the Temporary Detention Center here.

 

There should be an immediate investigation as these women claimed that they were taken out from the detention center in pretense for questioning but instead for sex favours. The women also were asked to pay a sum of money to ensure their release. I was also told that this thing had been going on for quite sometime.

 

I also learnt that these thing does not only happen at the detention center but also at nightspots where foreign women will become prey and pressured into sex, and if they do not oblige officer will create inconvenience for the women.

 

On the other hand employers are also pressured for under-table money in return for release of detained employees.

 

Many employers had registered their foreign workers under the Foreign Worker and Illegal Worker Registration Program that started on Oct 10 last year and only waiting for letter of acknowledgment from the Immigration Department that the registration had been received. Sadly, some of the employers whose workers had been detained during operation claimed that they had to pay for the acknowledgement or their workers will have to serve 3-months jail term and then deported.

 

As I had heard of many complaints before and now I am gathering evidence to the allegations as most of the victims are scared to come forward.