Monday, June 01, 2015

Hard to probe into MAS as it’s a GLC, says Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC)?

Somebody must be continuously monitoring government owned and controlled 'private companies' like MAS...and it certainly should NOT be the Executive (PM and his cabinet or its agents).

It should be Parliament (the Legislature), and this should be done possibly by a Parliamentary Committee (or a Parliamentary Oversight Committee or Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC)) - who will require regular reports to be submitted, with also the power to investigate, conduct inquiries, etc) If there was such a Parliamentary Oversight Committee, we may have been avoided failures and large debt-ridden government owned/controlled and linked company.

What we need is more that some Minister answering questions in parliament, followed by just 2 supplementary questions - which really is inadequate.

For example, now it comes to notice that MAS has management staff who are earning about RM100,000 and more - this is absurd as this is even more than our Member of Parliament's pay, more than our Judges salary, and even more than the salary of our Prime Minister. Really, maximum pay of management staff and even the CEO must be reasonable, and maybe should never be more than 10 times our Minimum Wages, and certainly not higher than our Ministers and Judges of the High Court.

We all know about the billions of ringgit that MAS has lost - but then, no one seems to have been taken to task or even charged in court for these failings. No high paying management staff, CEO or even members of the Board of Directors have been blamed for this - and this is not right. Someone has to pay for these...some people need to be even charged in court ... but... blame is fallen on no one ...and this is not right. 

Now, they tell us that these 'government-owned/controlled private company' cannot even be investigated by the Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

The Auditor General is also not looking at such companies like MAS - they seem to be in even a better position that Ministries. This is certainly not right given the fact that they belong to you and I, Malaysians, and it is our monies that is being lost and used in billions of ringgit to 'save' MAS

Hard to probe into MAS as it’s a GLC, PAC tells union

MAS's special position as a government-linked company makes it difficult for the Parliament's bi-partisan committee to probe into its mismanagement, says PAC. – Reuters file pic, May 31, 2015.MAS's special position as a government-linked company makes it difficult for the Parliament's bi-partisan committee to probe into its mismanagement, says PAC. – Reuters file pic, May 31, 2015.
The special position enjoyed by government-linked companies (GLC) under Khazanah Nasional makes it difficult for Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to conduct investigations or demand explanations from their management teams, the committee's chief said in response to calls to probe mismanagement in Malaysia Airlines.

Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed said that GLCs under Khazanah were not bound to offer explanation to PAC on what happens in their companies administratively, operationally or on their investments.

"This is what happened when PAC started to probe klia2 which comes under Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd, a GLC under Khazanah, where until today, the government has yet to direct the Auditor-General to conduct an audit on its construction," Nur Jazlan told The Malaysian Insider.

"Although the transport minister said that he agreed that the A-G must run an audit on klia2 as recommended by PAC in its report tabled at the Dewan Rakyat in November, until today, the government has yet to instruct an audit on klia2. " Nur Jazlan (pic, right) said that he was thankful for the trust placed in PAC by the National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia (Nufam), which wants the committee to investigate and haul up MAS management on the wastage incurred in the airline.

Nufam's request followed news last week that MAS had bled massive losses over the years due to more than a hundred types of allowances, overtime claims, salaries and over-priced contracts.

"We have no problem calling them up but usually these GLCs under Khazanah will say they have discussed the issues, and it has been decided at the board stage that apart from having been audited by international audit firms, there was no misuse of power.

"So by right, the MAS board of directors has to be held accountable if there had been any wastage. The government representative in the board is the one who should be looking after the interest of the people in this case, and the interest of the employees," he added.

On Friday, Nufam urged PAC to haul up the MAS board to answer allegations by its newly-appointed chief executive Christoph Mueller on wastages incurred in the company.

They said this after The Star reported on the financial drain in MAS caused by, among others, 180 types of allowances paid to staff.

"The MAS board of directors should be called up by PAC. If there has been any abuse of power in MAS, PAC has to haul them up.

"The revelation by the new MAS CEO shows that there was wastage and misuse of power in MAS," Nufam president Ismail Nasaruddin had told The Malaysian Insider.

Ismail added that if what Mueller said was true, it was not fair that MAS employees were made victims and had to lose their jobs.

The new CEO was quoted as saying on Friday that huge overtime claims, over-priced contracts and salaries had added to the airline's financial drain.
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