Thursday, July 01, 2021

Airport unions want MAHB Board to defer awards, appointments & all else, and focus on only one thing tomorrow

"Focus on Subang airport. Everything else doesn't matter for now"

TTDI, 1 July: At tomorrow's Board meeting of the Malaysia Airports Holding Bhd, its chairman Zambry Abdul Kadir may read out a letter he had just received to the airport workers' trade unionists. It's not their first letter to the boss but it's probably the most urgent. The unions are asking Zambry, the directors and managers of MAHB to focus on one do-or-die thing for all of them: the Subang airport (LTSAAS). 

The message is: Stop the government from selling or leasing out Subang to anyone else. Everything else is secondary and can wait, the union leaders said. 

That includes the award of a couple of tenders, including the aerotrain project which may cost RM750 million if one of the highly-favoured bidders do get the favour.

The Vibes has the story on that one:

'PRICEY' Pestech to snag MAHB's aerotrain tender?

KUALA LUMPUR – Pestech International Bhd is the frontrunner to win the aerotrain tender by Malaysia Airport Holdings Bhd (MAHB), but industry sources are raising concerns over the listed integrated technology provider’s bid price.

The Vibes understands that while Pestech, in a joint venture with Canadian jets specialist Bombardier Inc, is the top choice, it is also the highest bidder at RM750 million. The floor or lowest offer from other tenderers is about RM450 million. 

Also vying for the project are MMC Corp Bhd and Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries; Hartasuma Sdn Bhd together with Austrian company Doppelmayr Seilbahnen GmbH; and SMH Rail Sdn Bhd and Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd (MRCB) in a tie-up with Leitner-Poma of America Inc.

The MAHB board is expected to decide on the winning bid for this project at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport when it meets on Friday. (Read more HERE)

Tomorrow's Board meeting is also supposed to discuss the tenure of MAHB's Group CEO Mohd Shukrie Mohd Salleh, which is ending soon. The unions don't make it their business to interfere with such appointments and they are likely to make that clear in the letter. Still, they said they would convey to the Chairman and his Board their hope that MAHB keeps all its good people and not resort to retrenchment during these hard times. "We're thankful to the management. To date, we all get to keep our jobs."

For the last two weeks or so, following a "strike" warning issued by the unions, various quarters had come out to slam a proposal to the Ministry of Transport from a property tycoon who said his company could transform LTSAAS if it's given a 70-year lease to develop the airport and its surrounding areas. Politicians from Umno, PKR, MUDA and DAP were united, even, in objecting the proposal on "national security" concerns.

On its part, MAHB has presented its own Rejuvenation Plan for LTSAAS but the reception to this from the government has been lukewarm, at best.

Zambry, one of the politicians appointed to head a GLC by PM Mahiaddin Yasin, has repeatedly said he's opposed to the proposed takeover by the property tycoon. The first time he came out to openly oppose the plan was a few days after the airport unions had written to him a letter dated May 6. Read here

READ ALSO: Cuepacs wants government to defer repayment of civil servants' housing loans

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