Kuala Lumpor SkyTrain Revisted – The Legacy Of Corruption Continues

 

More interesting insight on how Bombardier does business selling it proprietary rapid transit system abroad and please remember both BC Transit and TransLink were in partnership with bombardier to sell the now called Movia Automatic Light Metro Abroad!

The Kelana Jaya line operates with the now called Movia Automatic Light metro system is is one of the three rapid transit lines operating in Kuala Lumpur. The other two rapid transit lines are a conventional light metro system and a monorail.

The whistle-blower said he worked on the Kelana Jaya bid and knows firsthand that a “success fee” was paid on that contract, too.

We see again, Bombardier’s murky business dealings are involved with another MALM light metro system.

Tan Sri Datuk, Mohamed Khatib Abdul Hamid, who earned the title as a long-time senior Malaysian diplomat and adviser to Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Former Prime Minister Najib Razak is involved in a massive multi billion dollar scandal, which includes Bombardier and SNC Lavalin.

Read here

Read here

Read here

Again, where SkyTrain is built, scandal follows. With such a pedigree, one would think the RCMP would be investigating the province’s and metro Vancouver’s continued building with a obsolete proprietary light metro system, which only seven have been built in the past 40 years and only three seriously used for urban transport.

Like the Casino scandal, local politicians remain largely blind, deaf and dumb.

 

Since the late 1990s, the Bombardier brand has been ubiquitous in Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital. But there has been no local investigation of how the company won its lucrative Malaysian contracts.
Since the late 1990s, the Bombardier brand has been ubiquitous in Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital. But there has been no local investigation of how the company won its lucrative Malaysian contracts. 

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The whistle-blower who spoke to The Globe says that he never heard the name Youssef Zarrouk while he was working for Bombardier. He says he never knew who received the success fees that he was told had to be fit within the overall cost of the bid.

He certainly doesn’t know who Mr. Zarrouk’s equivalent in Asia might be, although he does remember a colleague being told in the early 2000s that they had to fly to Taiwan to hand-deliver an envelope to someone there. The colleague described the recipient as someone who was “extremely wealthy, and obviously moved in influential circles.”

Shortly after that trip, Bombardier landed both the EverLine deal in South Korea and a 2006 deal to deliver new rail cars for the Kelana Jaya light-rail line in Malaysia’s bustling capital, Kuala Lumpur. The whistle-blower said he worked on the Kelana Jaya bid and knows firsthand that a “success fee” was paid on that contract, too.

The Bombardier logo is almost everywhere you look in Malaysia’s transportation sector. The train connecting the main terminals of Kuala Lumpur International Airport is branded “Made by Bombardier” in large black letters. The driverless light-rail cars that run along the capital city’s Kelana Jaya line are produced by Bombardier and its local partner, a company called Hartasuma. Kuala Lumpur’s second airport, SkyPark Subang, is the regional hub for the Switzerland-based VistaJet and its fleet of Bombardier-made private jets.


Bombardier signs on the shuttle train between terminals at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. MARK MacKINNON/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

Bombardier’s long track record of winning deals in Malaysia dates back to when the company won the bidding to build a light-rail line in Kuala Lumpur ahead of the 1998 Commonwealth Games. The relationship continued through March of this year, when the company won a contract to deliver 27 new rail cars to the same LRT system.

The winning streak included the 2006 deal that saw Bombardier, in consortium with Hartasuma, awarded a $320-million deal to deliver another 140 rail cars for the Kelana Jaya line.

In contrast with South Africa and South Korea, there has been no local investigation into how Bombardier won its contracts in Malaysia, although there was a brief public uproar around a 2011 contract that the government reportedly considered awarding to Bombardier over the advice of its own experts.

The key to Bombardier’s success in Malaysia, local analysts say, is its partnership with Hartasuma and the company’s politically connected executive director, Tan Sri Datuk Ravindran Menon, a leading figure in the Malaysia’s ethnic Indian community. (The title “Tan Sri Datuk” is the Malaysian equivalent of a lordship or knighthood.) Mr. Menon is also the founder and executive director of the SkyPark Group, the company that manages the SkyPark Subang terminal.

Hartasuma is itself part of a conglomerate called the ARA Group, which counts among its board members another Tan Sri Datuk, Mohamed Khatib Abdul Hamid, who earned the title as a long-time senior Malaysian diplomat and adviser to Prime Minister Najib Razak.

While there was no information available on Malaysia’s company register about the ownership of ARA Group, it is frequently linked to Khairy Jamaluddin, a cabinet minister who is also the son-in-law of Abdullah Badawi, Mr. Najib’s predecessor as prime minister and finance minister.

Mr. Marcil, the vice-president at Bombardier, said that the company partnered with Hartasuma in order to fulfill local content quotas, as required under Malaysian law. “Bombardier Transportation’s bids and contracts are entered into only after a thorough and rigorous review process that includes an examination of our local partners,” he said, directing all further questions to Hartasuma.

“It’s very clear that Ravindran Menon is not your regular Joe Businessman,” said Rafizi Ramli, a prominent Opposition politician. “It’s very obvious that he’s connected to Abdullah Badawi’s clan.” Mr. Rafizi said that at the time the Kelana Jaya contract was awarded to Bombardier and Hartasuma in 2006, Mr. Khairy was the second-most powerful man in the country after his father-in-law.

Mr. Rafizi said he believed it would be impossible for a foreign company to win a large infrastructure contract in Malaysia without paying into the country’s system of corruption and patronage. To support his argument, he pointed to the scandal surrounding the massive 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the fund has seen hundreds of millions of dollars that were marked for development projects redirected into the personal accounts of top Malaysian government officials.

The man who formally awarded the 2006 Kelana Jaya contract to Bombardier and Hartasuma was Shaipudin Shah Harun, a civil servant who headed Prasarana, the government body – under the Ministry of Finance – that manages the country’s transportation assets. Mr. Shaipudin, who resigned from the job two years after the Kelana Jaya contract was awarded, told The Globe the bidding process was fair and that Bombardier and Hartasuma won the deal because “they met all the criteria.”

He said he didn’t know of any success fee or commission payment on the deal, but added that even he wasn’t privy to the entire selection process. “We tried to make it as transparent as possible,” he said, when reached on his mobile phone. “But whatever goes on behind the scenes, we’re not party to it and would not be aware.”

Mr. Shaipudin said he didn’t know how Bombardier ended up in partnership with Hartasuma. “I don’t think it’s wise for me to comment on that.”

The Bombardier-Hartasuma relationship is consummated at a factory in an industrial park on Pulau Indah, a small island off of Malaysia’s west coast. Near-complete Bombardier trains arrive by sea, and Hartasuma employees – the majority of whom appear to be migrant workers from Bangladesh – install plastic seats and other finishing touches before the trains are put into service.

A security guard at the facility said that Mr. Menon and the other directors are rarely seen at the factory. But The Globe encountered two Hartasuma executives when a reporter visited Bombardier’s local headquarters on the 25th floor of an office tower in central Kuala Lumpur.

They deflected questions about how and why the Bombardier-Hartasuma consortium had been so successful in procuring infrastructure contracts. “Why in Canada would they care about how a contract is awarded in Malaysia?” said Jayasri Menon, whose LinkedIn profile identifies her as a management consultant at Hartasuma. She added that only Mr. Menon could answer The Globe’s questions.

Mr. Menon did not reply to e-mailed questions, however.

“You are touching a very sensitive topic,” Ms. Menon said. “You are touching a very sensitive line.”

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