KUALA LUMPUR, July 31 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim wants the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) asset procurement system revamped to ensure outside parties can no longer rake in excessive commissions.
He said the revamp must be done as the preparedness of national defence asset equipment, such as ships, aircraft and tanks, is not coordinated and in line with the economic growth and Malaysia’s geopolitical and strategic position.
“Why I choose to mention this to all of you is because for veterans, for the military and, of course, for all of us, the country’s preparedness in the field of defence is an important matter.
“So, we suggest to the military leadership to revamp the procurement system, there can be no more interference from outside parties.
“The chiefs of staff are responsible for choosing the best warships, aircraft, tanks and other equipment and not repeat the same mistakes, stealing through excessive commissions that our equipment cannot provide a solid defence,” he said.
Anwar said this when officiating the MAF Veterans Entrepreneurship Empowerment Programme at Wisma Perwira ATM here today.
The Prime Minister said that in maintaining the country’s peace and stability, the capability of defence assets is something that cannot be underestimated, although there are some who will belittle the government’s efforts to increase spending allocations to strengthen the assets.
“I wish to state here, our responsibility is to provide an overview and set policies so that the country’s defence forces and security capabilities are comprehensive and solid.
“So, stop the old methods and practices. I don’t care if we face opposition from the outside because we stand firm about the issue of corruption and excessive commissions,” he said.
He added that while the military and other authorities are working hard to maintain national security, it was only appropriate for this group’s basic facilities and welfare to be improved to appreciate their sacrifices.
As such, Anwar, as Finance Minister, announced the approval of an additional allocation of RM200 million this year for the upgrading of facilities and dilapidated homes of military personnel, as well as another RM40 million for police housing, including in the Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM).
“Otherwise, while we ask them to defend the country, we will still hear that the basic facilities are not complete,” he said at the event, which was also attended by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.
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