Locals will head Prasarana and MAHB

PUTRAJAYA: The board of directors for Syarikat Prasarana Malaysia Bhd has yet to shortlist names of candidates for the new CEO.

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng and Transport Minister Loke Siew Fook today gave an assurance the government will appoint locals to lead such government-linked companies.

Prasarana and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad are considered important strategic assets and transport GLCs, Loke said after witnessing a signing ceremony for the supplementary agreement for MRT2.

It was earlier reported that Prasarana president and CEO Mohamed Hazlan Mohamed Hussain had been suspended from his position.

It was said that the board of directors made the decision on Dec 24 last year due to “public dissatisfaction” over the light rail transit (LRT) services, including late announcement of disruptions.

Meanwhile, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd’s (MAHB) group CEO Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin resigned on Jan 4, 2019, a year after he was appointed to the role.

Lim added that they were enough local professionals capable of helming such GLCs and leading them to greater heights.

Lim said the supplementary agreement signed between MRT Corp Sdn Bhd and MMC-Gamuda KVMRT (PDP SSP) today officially ended rationalisation efforts for the mega infrastructure project after the Pakatan Harapan government came to power.

Lim said the rationalisation had resulted in RM8.82 billion savings for the country.

The original project cost RM39.35 billion but this was reduced to RM30.53 billion after a series of negotiations.

“The savings will not be immediate but would be spread out over 20 years.”

Lim added that they were still contemplating including an MRT2 stop at the Bandar Malaysia site now that the project had been revived.

He said they needed to consider the progress of the development first to ensure volume and capacity.

“We have to factor in the demand for MRT services and development stages of Bandar Malaysia.”

Commenting on Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s decision not to sell PLUS Malaysia Bhd, Lim said the people should respect this decision made by the Cabinet.

PLUS is owned by national sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd (51%) and retirement fund Employees Provident Fund (49%).

Mahathir yesterday said toll rates would be reduced by 18% from this year, with no hikes for the next 20 years.