DAP rep questions Sarawak government’s purchase of Zecon Medicare shares

Sulok Tawie
Yong says that the state government was fully aware of the problems faced in the construction of the Petra Jaya Hospital. — Picture by Sulok Tawie

KUCHING, July 12 — Pending state assemblyman Violet Yong today asked the Sarawak state government to explain the rationale in buying 49 per cent equity shares in Zecon Medicare Sdn Bhd for RM155 million.       

Zecon Medicare Sdn Bhd is a wholly-owned a subsidiary Zecon Bhd, the contractor of a long delayed Petra Jaya Hospital project here.

“The first payment of RM31 million was made in December, 2017 whereas the balance of RM108.5 million was paid at the end of April, 2018, a week right before the 14th general election,” Yong said during the debate at the State Legislative Assembly here.

Yong said she believes the state government was fully aware that the Petra Jaya Hospital project had long been overdue for completion, yet the State Finance Secretary Sarawak decided to go ahead to pump in RM155 million to purchase the shares of Zecon Medicare.

“At that time, the project was completed around 33 per cent only instead of 100 per cent full completion as scheduled.

“Furthermore, it was all within the state government’s knowledge that the reasons for the delay apart from lacking of funds, was mainly due to shortage of manpower since the beginning of the project,” said the DAP lawmaker.

She asked if there any due diligence or risk management studies were carried out before the state government made a decision to purchase the equity shares.

She said that there has been no official statement from the state government concerning the purchase of the shares, after the Pakatan Harapan (PH) federal government had decided to terminate Zecon Bhd’s contract to build the hospital.

The contract for the RM495 million project was awarded to Zecon Bhd. The project started in May 2013 and should have been completed by November 2016.

According to Health Minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad recently, the federal Cabinet had agreed in principle to terminate Zecon Bhd’s contract.