Sub-contractor latest to be remanded in connection with Sarawak rural road case

By John Isaac

A SUB-contractor has been remanded for two days to facilitate the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) investigation into allegations of submitting false claims involving a road project worth RM800 million in Sarawak.

This 44-year-old was arrested by MACC at its office here around 6;30pm yesterday.

The sub-contractor was the third person to be remanded after two company directors with the title “Datuk”, aged 44 and 42 years old, were remanded last Wednesday. The two “Datuk” were released on MACC bail on Sunday.

Last Thursday, the MACC failed to secure a remand order against a lawyer to facilitate their investigation into the case after the Magistrate’s Court ruled that MACC could not satisfy the court that it had sufficient evidence to link the lawyer to the case when applying for a seven-day remand order.

Counsels Shankar Ram and Wong King Wei represented the sub-contractor, while deputy public prosecutor (DPP) S.Thangavelu acted for the prosecution today.

The case was being investigated under Sections 16 (b), 17 (a) and 18 of the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission Act 2009 which carries penalties of imprisonment for a term not exceeding 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the sum or value of the gratification which is the subject matter of the offence, upon conviction.

According to the Borneo Post, the project, under the Defence Ministry’s “Jiwa Murni” programme, involved the implementation of 10 rural road upgrading works in Miri, Kapit, Ba Kelalan, Limbang and Belaga.

The project was awarded by the Ministry to the company for a tenure starting from 2010 until 2016.

In its statement last week, MACC said: “Our informant said many complaints had been lodged by locals against the poor condition of these rural roads because they were not built according to specifications.”

It added that these rural roads located in Miri, Kapit, Ba Kelalan, Limbang and Belaga were damaged after few months of building.

MACC said based on technical research, the works done were not in accordance with the Public Works Department’s (JKR) standard.