Malays winning majority of Penang open tender jobs
PENANG, Jan 31 – Some 70 per cent of two state firm’s open tenders have been won by Malay contractors, showing the community to be as competitive as others, Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng (pic) said today
He said Malay contractors won 16 out of 23 tender awards, or 70 per cent, from the Penang Development Corporation(PDC) and 44 out of 66 or 67 per cent of contracts issued by the Perbadanan Bekalan Air Pulau Pinang(PBAPP) in open tenders since Pakatan Rakyat took over Penang in March 2008.
“The performance by Malay contractors in an open tender system with non-Malays proves that Malay contractors can compete with others and win tender awards on their own merit,” Lim said in a statement today.
The DAP secretary-general has been advocating open tenders under his “Competency, Accountability and Transparency” (CAT) programme since becoming chief minister although Umno and Malay rights groups accuse him of sidelining the community.
“Clearly it is not the race that is an issue but failed policies that encourage dependency especially when it helps Barisan Nasional maintain the status quo and its grip on power,” he added, referring to the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) federal government.
Lim accused the BN of instituting policies that “stifles initiative, creativity, hard work, drive and productivity which benefited only the few BN cronies at the expense of entire country”.
“For instance, a 30 per cent quota of publicly listed shares were reserved for Malays but only a few benefited as many ordinary Malays never received shares from the Federal government,” he added.
But the chief minister expressed regret that there were allies within PR Penang “is aligned with BN in opposing efforts to implement an open tender system and CAT governance”, referring to Bayan Baru MP Datuk Seri Zahrain Mohamed Hashim, who had criticised his administration.
“We must remain steadfast as we are backed by results. The Penang state government has been able to turn a projected deficit of RM35 million in 2008 budget to a record surplus of RM88 million.
“A projected deficit of RM40 million in 2009 Budget has been turned around to record a surplus of RM77 million.
“In fact, the 2009 budget surplus would have been a record RM92 million were it not for the payment of RM14.7 million as a result of the Tang Hak Ju land scam of the previous administration,” he said.