The People Could Have Received RM1,200 BR1M If MAS Did Not Lose RM4.1 Billion

SHAH ALAM, 25 Feb: The people would have received RM1,200 in the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) if Malaysian Airlines (MAS) did not suffer huge losses amounting to RM41 billion in the past 3 years.

The Penang Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng, said that BR1M recipients should have received that amount, as promised under the BN 13th General Election (GE13) manifesto, and not reduce it to RM650.

7.1

He said that MAS incurred losses of RM 1.17 billion last year, RM 433 million in 2012 and a record loss of RM 2.5 billion in 2011.

“These RM 4.1 billion in losses over 3 years would nearly make up for the additional sum required to top up the difference in BR1M payments from RM650 (which costs RM4.5 billion) to RM 1,200,” he said.

Guan Eng said whilst MAS may think that these losses are sustainable because MAS still have cash balances of M3.9 billion as at end of last year, it would be irresponsible if not suicidal to continue with the “business as usual” attitude.

He said that the Singapore Business Times have even suggested that MAS file for bankruptcy to allow its replacement the fresh start needed to resuscitate the ailing airline because MAS is bogged down by overstaffing and “lopsided procurement contracts” from maintenance to catering.

7.2

“No one is surprised that cronyism and hanky-panky is one of the main causes of MAS continued decline,” Guan Eng said in a press statement.

However, he does not agree with MAS filing for bankruptcy not only because it is shameful but its adverse impact on MAS’ workers.

“Khazanah must come up with a concrete plan to rescue MAS, which must include the adoption of international practices of open competitive tenders and performance-based assessment for all workers, including top management,” he said.

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