Seven of Datasonic Technologies Sdn Bhd’s (DTSB) government contracts were awarded without an open tender process, according to Home Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.

Datasonic Group Bhd currently has nine contracts with the Home Ministry worth a total of RM1.1 billion, with only two of these contracts having gone through the process of an open tender, the Dewan Rakyat was told.

In a written reply to Lim Guan Eng (Pakatan Harapan – Bagan), Saifuddin revealed that the seven projects were worth around RM1 billion and were granted between September 2015 and August 2022.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said five of the contracts totalling RM990.01 million were between Datasonic’s wholly-owned subsidiary Datasonic Technologies Sdn Bhd (DTSB) and the Immigration Department, and the other four worth RM113.44 million were between DTSB and the National Registration Department.

“Seven of the nine contracts were secured through direct negotiation between 2016 and 2022, while the remaining two contracts were through open tender,” Saifuddin said in a written parliamentary reply on Wednesday (March 29) to Lim Guan Eng [PH-Bagan].

Lim wanted to know the status of the contracts awarded to Datasonic, how many of these contracts involved family members of a former top government leader, and whether the contracts will proceed or be retendered.

“All these contracts are still in force, and are proceeding in accordance with the implementation schedule as stated in the agreement documents,” the minister said.

Saifuddin said DTSB has the capability and capacity to undertake security priniting because it possesses a factory, finance ministry certificate, as well as a security document printing certificate issued by the office of the chief government security officer.

The minister did not respond to Lim’s query on the alleged involvement of family members of a former top government leader, except to say that the ministry cannot control the ownership of Datasonic’s shares.

Datasonic’s share price closed unchanged at 42.5 sen on Wednesday (March 29), valuing the group at RM1.26 billion. The counter has been trending downwards since it closed at 49.5 sen on Feb 3.

Source : The Edge

‘Zahid received two cheques worth RM6 million from DataSonic Group deputy MD’

A Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigating officer revealed that Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had received two cheques totalling RM6 million after a passport shortage problem occured which affected the Immigration Department’s services.

Mohd Hizar Farhan Abdul Razi, 32, said the cheques were from IT services management company Datasonic Group Bhd (DGB) deputy managing director Chew Ben Ben.

DGB’s subsidiary Datasonic Technologies Sdn Bhd (DTSB) was awarded a contract by the Ministry of Finance (MoF) in 2015 to supply passport chips for five years or 12.5 million chips to be inserted into the polycarbonate biodata page of Malaysian passports.

The 91st prosecution witness said on Sept 16, 2016, Chew was called to meet Zahid to explain the problem on the passport shortage.

“In mid April, 2017, Chew was again called to meet the accused at the latter’s official residence at Sri Satria, Putrajaya.

“After this meeting, Chew handed two cheques totalling RM6 million to the accused,” Mohd Hizar told the High Court.

He was testifying in Zahid’s trial over 47 charges of money-laundering, bribery and criminal breach of trust (CBT).

Meanwhile, during re-examination by deputy public prosecutor Gan Peng Kun, the witness said the contract was awarded to DTSB in line with the standard operating procedure (SOP) set by the MoF.

However, Mohd Hizar said it would not have gone through without Zahid’s agreement.

This, he said, happened because Zahid was the Minister of Home Affairs at that time.

Gan: Do you know what are the situations deemed non-compliant with the SOP?

Mohd HIzar: I don’t know.

Gan: If the accused did not agree for the contract to be awarded to DTSB, would MoF award that contract?

Mohd Hizar: No.

Asked by the accused’s counsel Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Zainal why the contract would not be awarded to DTSB without Zahid agreeing to it, the witness said it was because Zahid was the Home Affairs minister at that time.

Mohd Hizar also testified that the MoF has the authority to award the contract and not the Home Ministry.

DGB and DTSB were implicated in the criminal charges against Zahid where the former deputy prime minister is accused of receiving a RM5 million cheque from Chew.

The Bagan Datuk member of parliament is also charged with receiving another cheque of RM1 million from the same person in relation to the Malaysian passport chips.

Source : NST

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