Auditor-General’s 2012 Report (6)
Oct 1, 2013
AUDIT REPORT Between June 2008 and December 2010, the Malaysian police purchased five Beechcraft King Air 350 aircraft at a whopping US$58.25 million (RM175.24 million) for its Air Wing.
The planes were supposed to facilitate the upgrading of the nation’s air security.
However, within less than five years of usage, one of the planes had to be grounded for eight months, between September 2011 and April 2012, while another could not be used between June and November 2012.
Furthermore, out of the five, only three aircraft have been delivered so far.
The project was awarded after direct negotiations with Hawker Pacific Airservices Ltd, through its agent EZ Aviation Sdn Bhd.
The Home Ministry reported that the planes had to be grounded as a result of lack of financial allocation, as the Police Air Wing would continuously use components from the grounded aircraft as spare parts for other aircraft.
The Auditor-General Report says all Police Air Wing aircraft should be safe for use at all times.
Maintenance done by private companies
It noted that there were weaknesses in the preparation and planning, resulting in the Police Air Wing relying on private companies for the maintenance of the aircraft.
The AG Report recommended quick and proactive action to be taken to ensure that the wing could become an organisation able to maintain its own aircraft based on the set standards.
The Home Ministry, in its reply, said the Police Air Wing’s finances were limited, but it still obtained an additional allocation of RM194.75 million for aircraft maintenance in November 2012.
The 2012 AG Report also proposed that there should be enough pilots and aircraft engineers employed to operate the aircraft to make sure the planes were fully utilised.
It also noted that following the late delivery of the two remaining aircraft, Liquidated Ascertained Damages (LAD) should be assessed on the company supplying it for RM6.39 million.
“In the auditor’s view, the Home Ministry or the Police Air Wing need to impose the LAD on the supplier for the delay in the supply of the two aircraft, as stipulated in the contract.
“Action to terminate the contract should be done if it continues to delay in supplying the fourth and fifth aircraft,” the report states.
The AG also lamented that the three aircraft only registered 43 hours usage for monitoring crime and 89 hours for public order between 2010 and 2012.
These hours, it said were low, and defeated the purpose of their purchase for maintaining security.
Most of the time, their use was for operational support and training which accounted for 2,223 hours and 672 hours respectively.