Sunday 17 April 2016

Sarawak Report : Why Did Najib Give Sarawak's Bustari Yusof A Million Ringgit?

The latest story from Sarawak Report
Sarawak Report

17 Apr 2016

Najib paid his golf buddy a million ringgit, according to investigation papers

Najib paid his golf buddy a million ringgit, according to investigation papers

One of the as yet unreported recipients of Najib’s cash, according to the papers released to ABC Australia’s Four Corners programme, was the Sarawakian mover and shaker Bustari Yusof.

He received a million ringgit from the money that found its way into Najib’s personal account from the 1MDB subsidiary SRC.

People who are currently being gifted with water butts and maybe RM50 per family as bribes to vote BN in the coming election might think this is a lot of money.

But, in fact, it is nothing to either the billionaire Najib or the billionaire Bustari.  The former plainly just wasn’t prepared to pay his pal out of his own money, so he used the KWAP pension fund, sourced through SRC, into his own account.

Far more serious than even this outrage, however, is the new evidence obtained by Sarawak Report that Bustari’s companies have been positioned by his friend Najib to leach out billions more public money, not only from the RM27 billion allocation to the Pan Borneo Highway, but even more shockingly from Sarawak’s under-funded public health services, which have been recently restructured to give Bustari a fat cut.

Raids on Infrastructure and Health, as Najib’s key man makes his bid to control Sarawak 

Close - Adenan and Najib's right hand man Bustari, who was at the fore-front of negotiating Adenan's big shows of support for Najib

Close – Adenan and Najib’s right hand man Bustari, who was at the fore-front of negotiating Adenan’s big shows of support for Najib

As Sarawak Report has previously noted, Bustari Yusof and his brother Fadillah are Najib’s key agents in Sarawak.

Businessman Bustari is one of the Prime Minister’s closest current confidants and golfing partners and he has taken care to become part of Adenan’s closest inner circle as well.

This ex-PBB Treasurer originally thrived under Taib Mahmud, gaining vast timber concessions through his company Sarako and also massive public contracts through his construction outfit KACC, but now he has even grander future designs on the state.

His brother Fadillah is of course directly in politics, with the lucrative present position of Minister for Public Works.

Min of Public Works - plum position for Fadillah who has placed his men in seats for the next election

Minister of Public Works – plum position for Fadillah (right) who has placed his men in seats for the next election

He also heads up and pays for the Sarawak Youth Wing of PBB, which has become his power-base.  Fadillah has succeeded in getting many of his key followers nominated for many of the seats in the State Assembly elections, which will give him great influence should they win (as he expects them to once he has poured money into their campaigns).

There is a game plan here, which is that Fadillah is known to be positioning to become the next Chief Minister once elderly Adenan has been pushed aside after the election.
This plan is supported of course, by Najib, who more than anything desires control of Sarawak through his personal proxies.

So, how has the Yusof family exercised its powerful influences both in Sarawak and in Malaysia?  Sadly, largely to make money.

Sarawak Report has already exposed the blatant and outrageous scam by which Fadillah, as the Minister of Public Works, has handed a ‘turnkey’ role to a company controlled by his own brother for the whole of the much vaunted Borneo Highway.

Bustari’s Lebuhraya Borneo Utara Sdn Bhd (where around 40% of the shares are held by his long-term employee and a close political friend) was disgracefully awarded the so-called role of ‘Project Delivery Partner’ by the ministry, without the slightest attempt at a tendering process.

Observers calculate that the scam should enable LBU to cream off at least 5% of the entire budget of RM27 billion – i.e. over a billion ringgit and probably far more: because, as the Sarawak Building and Civil Engineering Constractors Association (SBCECA) has protested, the awarding of behind doors ‘project management’ contracts of this nature is known to inflate the costs of projects “by at least 30%”.
“SBCECA urges the Government to ensure all future projects are openly tendered and awarded to the lowest qualified tenderer in a transparent manner,” its chairman Lau Kah King said in a statement.

“Open tenders will save the Government at least 30% in construction cost. ‘Selected tenders’ and direct negotiation procurement methods, not only cost more to the Government, it also doesn’t guarantee timely completion and better quality,” Lau said.
It is not hard to guess Najib’s objective in sanctioning this arrangement for his golfing friend, who has always had a key role in funnelling funds into BN’s election campaigns and whose brother is now seeking to buy control of PBB.

Bustari and Adenan celebrate (again) the lavish wedding of Bustari's son

Bustari and Adenan celebrate (again) the lavish wedding of Bustari’s son – what is the CM doing to stop this plunder?

One Medicare Sdn Bhd

However, now an even more pernicious raid on public funds has come to light, with the restructuring that has taken place in the provision of Sarawak’s public hospital services. At the centre of the scandal is a company named One Medicare Sdn Bhd, which after the last General Election was given a key share of the budget for hospital support services.

The public company that had previously managed this provision and invested heavily in the service, Faber Group Bhd, was elbowed out of 60% of its share of their contract in Sabah and Sarawak in March last year. According to the Star newspaper:
“Analysts also said they wanted to know what the other joint venture parties were bringing to the table as Faber would have already invested a hefty sum throughout the years to acquire and sustain these assets when the company wholly owned the concessions in both states.
Faber managing director Azmir Merican.. said the company was not “able” to release any financial information pertaining to these contracts and how it would impact Faber but would do so once it had obtained “clearance” from the Government via the Health Ministry.” [The Star]
So, who are the new joint venture parties who have been foisted on a public health contract in this secretive deal and what expertise do they indeed ‘bring to the table’ to benefit Sarawak and Sabah’s health services?

The 60% shareholder of One Medicare Sdn Bhd is now Metrocare Services Sdn Bhd, whereas the remaining 40% remains in the hands of Faber, through Edgenta:

60% of the contract is now in the hands of Metrocare Services Sdn Bhd
60% of the contract is now in the hands of Metrocare Services Sdn Bhd
There is a give-away as to who owns parent company Metrocare Services in One Medicare’s line up of Directors, which not only includes the experienced Azmir Merican, but also no less than three members of the Bustari family:
Bustari line up

Bustari family line up
An even bigger give away is the identity of the Chairman of One Medicare, Anthony Bujang. Bujang is also the CEO of Bustari’s major public company Petra Energy Bhd.

Chairman Anthony Bujang was centre stage at the launch of the new arrangements last year

Bustari’s man Anthony Bujang was centre stage at the launch of the new arrangements last year

So, who owns Metrocare?  It turns out to be yet two more companies, Pop Media Sdn Bhd and Obyu Resources Sdn Bhd!

who is behind Pop

Who is behind Pop Media and the major shareholder Obyu Resources?

Obyu Resources, which holds 4/5 of the shares (above), is no stranger to readers of Sarawak Report, which has already named its parent company in previous exposes about crony contract. OBYU Holdings Sdn Bhd is a major investment company based in Sarawak, which has benefitted from numerous government favours.

It was incorporated soon after Taib took power in 1983 and Bustari Yusuf (who had made the game changing decision to back Taib against his uncle in their power struggles) has been its Executive Chairman ever since:.

Bustari is the owner...

Surprise – Bustari is the owner…

This means Bustari owns a 48% share of One Medicare Services and its fat contract, which has been granted for the next ten years.

Where was the supposedly “reformist” Adenan Satem when all this was going through?  Of course, we remember that Satem was appointed by his brother in law Taib and is best friends with the Bustaris too.
As for Pop Media Sdn Bhd, this is partly owned by the Sarawak Economic Development Corporation SEDC, the head of which is Soedirman bin Aini.

Najib's son Norashman and Bustari's son celebrate in lavish terms

Najib’s son Norashman and Bustari’s son Subky celebrated in lavish terms

Soedirman’s daughter caught the headlines earlier this year when his daughter Tidja Norain married none other than Bustari’s son Subky Bustari in one of the most lavish and extended weddings of the decade.
The grand reception in KL was attended by Najib, of course, and all his inner circle of advisors, interestingly, including his master of communications UK national Paul Stadlen.

The celebrations then moved to Kuching, where the same pantheon of cronies gathered again, featuring Adenan as a key guest.  The friendship between Bustari, Najib and Adenan has also been carefully preserved into the next generation. Subky Bustari has been photographed on numerous occasions with Najib’s son Norashman.

The man in charge of Najib's questionable communications strategy, Paul Stadlen sits right at the wedding feast, next to Najib's daughter, whose own wedding was even more expensive

The man in charge of Najib’s questionable communications strategy, Paul Stadlen sits right at the wedding feast, next to Najib’s daughter, Nooryana, whose own wedding was even more expensive
Those around this clique say that the strategy is clear.  Najib aims to control Sarawak, helped by the wealthy Bustari’s close ties to  Adenan, but more importantly with the plan of replacing Adenan with Bustari’s brother Fadillah.

In Najib's tight circle, Bustari is in pole position - a former close friend of wife Rosmah to boot.

In Najib’s tight circle, Bustari is in pole position – a former close friend of wife Rosmah to boot.
This way, lament dissenters within PBB Najib will finally achieve UMNO control of Sarawak in the same way that it controls Sabah.

Fadillah’s prominent role within the UMNO community in West Malaysia has been noted with anxiety amongst these Sarawak BN supporters, who fear that their parties are being made a vehicle for UMNO to capture the state through Fadillah and Bustari’s political and economic power-base.

Business on the side for Karim Hamza?

Meanwhile, there is one remaining shareholding at One Medicare Sdn Bhd, that raises some eyebrows. The private company Simfoni Dua Sdn Bhd in fact has a larger share of the 20% of the company owned by Pop Media Sdn Bhd than the SEDC.

The larger shareholder is a private concern

The larger shareholder is a private concern

So, who are these guys at Simfoni Dua Sdn Bhd, who have been give around 10% of the contract for the entire of Sarawak’s hospital support services?

It turns out the company coyly hides behind yet another company, which is called Fieldmart Sdn Bhd.  This is owned by two people who appear to be rather low key.  One is a ‘banking service manager’ and the other gives his “employment” as being formerly at Simfoni Dua Sdn Bhd itself, where both are Directors.
What are these two chaps doing owning 10% of Sarawak’s hospital procurement contract, alongside the State Government itself, which indeed has the lesser share of the company?

Sarawak Report wonders if there is a hint in the identity of one of the Directors of Simfoni Dua, who is none other than a serving State Assemblyman, Karim Hamza, formerly Taib Mahmud’s garrulous political secretary?

A bit of business for Karim?

A bit of business for Karim?

Hamza has of course gone on record supporting his boss Taib on the subject of using political connections to “do business” on the side.  He thinks it’s fine and sees no problem over conflict of interest.
Why should only business leaders be able to fly around in private jets, he once lectured Radio Free Sarawak?  Surely, political leaders also deserve such perks, given all their “sacrifices” and “hard work”?

No longer employed, but remains a shareholder?

No longer employed, but remains a shareholder?

So, perhaps Karim Hamza can enlighten Sarawakian voters why he is a Director of Simfoni Dua and what expertise he has on hospital provision?

Also, can he explain who the shareholders of the company are exactly, given they are also employed there?
And why has Bustari Yusof been given a controlling 60% share, via secret tender, of a medical contract to supply hospitals, which was once managed by a public company with expertise in this field?
Because, voters should understand that this is how BN plans to supply Sarawak’s public hospitals for all of the next decade with this ten year contract handed to Bustari.

Readers might also like to remind themselves how former Sarawak Health Secretary and Deputy Chief Minister, George Chang signed off medical contracts also, before Sarawak Report exposed him and voters booted him out at the last state election.

DCM’s Girl Got Heart Hospital Contract Worth Millions – Exclusive!

DCM’s Girl Got Heart Hospital Contract Worth Millions – Exclusive!

What a relief! Taib finally got Najib to agree to a Federal buy-out of his clinic and got him to open it on January 16th

A series of sickening revelations have started to emerge about Kuching’s newly-opened ‘Heart Hospital’ at Kota Samarahan, following investigations by Sarawak Report.

The Unit, which was opened to a fanfare last week by the Malaysian Prime Minister, has turned out to be the most expensive hospital ever built in Malaysia in terms of the cost per bed.

Even so we have discovered patients are already being turned away from life-saving treatment, because the facilities are inadequate to perform heart operations. Much of the equipment is obsolete and only one ward out of the eight floors of the hospital is even staffed.  This is despite the fact that the project should have been completed in 2006 and is therefore six years late!

Shocking incompetence and clear corruption

Moth-balled - most of the hospital is not open and the decade old equipment is still unwrapped! 

This state of affairs can only cast the most serious questions over the competence of the Deputy Chief Minister and SUPP leader George Chan. He as the Sarawak minister in charge of health originated and managed the project.

His culpability is further deepened by the fact that he granted his own girlfriend, Christina Foo, the multi-million ringgit contract to purchase most of the hospital’s medical equipment.  She set up a company called Trend-Nics, which a raft of insiders acknowledge was handed the lions share of the equipment contracts!

Ms Foo is acknowledged to be pretty and lively and she was Chan’s open mistress for many years during his marriage to his former wife. However, experts and insiders are adamant that not only was there no need for this middle-man contract, but that Ms Foo was not qualified to be involved in such matters.  Therefore there are now serious questions about how much profit Chan’s mistress made on her major share of the RM 130 million contract that was awarded to buy this equipment, much of which has been now found to be inadequate.

Cover Up?
There appears to have been an attempt to cover up the involvement of Ms Christina Foo in the Trend-Nics affair and to disguise her Directorship of the company.  

Unconvincing cover-up. Trend-Nics is directed by Foo's sister, Florence and another called 'Celine' Foo. It is owned by another company called Chastain

Our investigation of Trend-Nics official documents show that the Directors of the company are in fact registered as two other Ms Foos called Florence and ‘Celine’ .  This camouflage would appear to distance the fetching Christina Foo from the company.  However, the 100% shareholder of Trend-Nics is registered as another company called Chastain Sdn Bhd.  Chastain is 80% owned by Christina Foo herself, who is also registered as a Director at her swanky Kasuma Resort residence.  The other Director, Florence Foo owns 10% and the remaining 10% is owned by ‘Celine’ – who turns out to be represented by Christina Foo herself!

The real owner of Trend-Nics is clearly revealed to be George Chan's girlfriend!

Insiders have told Sarawak Report that they believe Trend-Nics could have made as much as RM40 million from the contract.  If so, Sarawak Report would like to know if any of this enormous sum found its way back to George Chan in order to fuel his inexplicably wealthy life-style and his marriage to an extremely young new wife?

The fetching Ms Foo – but what does Christina know about medical equipment?
Robbing the sick
The people of Kuching are in desperate need of a new hospital.  Millions of taxpayers money have now been spent on this hugely expensive project. However medical insiders have told our Sarawak Report that with Kota Samarahan the Government has fobbed the people off with a useless White Elephant instead of the General Hospital they need.  They say the new hospital, which was first built as a private cancer facility, is simply not designed to be a public hospital.  It does not fufil the needs of the people and it is inaccessible, miles from Kuching with no bus routes.  Not only this, but there have been so many years of delays that much of the life-saving medical equipment in the hospital is now too old and obsolete!
One reliable source familiar with the Malaysian Health Ministry told Sarawak Report:
“The hospital was designed for wealthy, fee-paying patients, with single and double rooms, and it is simply wrong that the federal government has paid so much money for a hospital that is inappropriate for government patients and was never designed for the large numbers of government patients that government hospitals must accept”
The newly re-named Heart Hospital at Kota Samarahan – only one floor is open
Sarawak Report has concluded that the reason Kota Samarahan has been opened as a state hospital is to cover up a case of grand theft and failure by BN Ministers.  The project began in 2003 as a venture to open a private hospital to make money from foreign ‘health tourists’.  Chan’s department sponsored the whole project under the title Sarawak International Medical Centre with a budget of RM473 million.
However, costs soon began to rise, not least because Chan and Taib had agreed to pay the contractors in Euros, which rose from 3.2 ringgit to 4.8 ringgit over the period.  this increased the price to RM 660 million, according to insiders.  Eventually, the private health care company partner in the project pulled out of the deal.  It is believed they lost confidence in the face of corrupt practices and incompetence!

White Elephant fobbed back onto public
The solution for Taib and his ministers has been to pressure the Federal Government into buying the hospital off their hands and to open it as a public hospital!  The wrangling and negotiations have taken years, but Taib is said to have demanded the face-saving support from Najib in advance of the up-coming State Election. 

 Last week the PM obliged by offering what is believed to have been some RM400 million for the hospital – nothing approaching the actual cost to build.

Experts have calculated that the cost to the public of this project now works out at by far the most expensive hospital built in Malaysia in terms of cost per bed.  A normal calculation of costs would be RM1.2 million per working bed.  The original plans for Kota Samarahan was for a 300 bed facility costing RM473 million, which was already expensive at RM1.57 million per bed.

Old timers - Was this about a hospital for the sick or making money out of the people?

However, by the time the project finished 6 years late, the cancer facility had been dropped and so had half the beds, resulting in a 137 bed hospital costing what is estimated to have been at RM 660 million. This works out at RM  4.8 million a bed or nearly five times as much as the average for a public hospital.

Insiders are complaining that if this sort of money had been spent on a proper hospital for the people then they would have had a wonderful health care centre that could have met every medical need – not just a small hospital which only is designed for heart patients!

Useless – The hospital has old equipment and not enough oxygen!
Shockingly, Sarawak Report has now also learnt that even at this enormous price, desperately ill patients are already being turned away from the barely open hospital because it is not equipped to operate on them!   Yet another insider has confided that since the hospital started admitting patients a month ago doctors have been unable to perform surgery because of the cheap and inadequate system that has been installed for providing oxygen.  They told us:
” patients who have be  referred to the heart centre were admitted to the heart centre, then sent back to the referring hospitals because of inadequate oxygen supply. NO HEART SURGERY HAS BEEN POSSIBLE BECAUSE OF THE OXYGEN SHORTAGE” – [hospital insider]
Our investigations have confirmed that  the problems lies with the original contract and construction of the building, which the Sarawak Government failed to monitor.  Despite the enormous cost of the project the state owned Sarawak Specialist Hospital & Medical Centres Sdn Bhd failed to demand a proper Wall Oxygen System to be built in by the contractors.  The contractors were able to argue that they should go for the option of providing oxygen canisters for patients, for a fraction of the cost.  However, doctors have explained that such canisters are totally inadequate to perform heart surgery and do not supply enough oxygen!  It would be now impossible to install a proper oxygen system without tearing down the whole building and starting again!

Waiting - but not much treatment on offer!

A disaster of such magnitude cannot begin to be excused on the part of the so-called health expert YB Dr George Chan, who claims to be medically qualified, or indeed the contractors and consultants who managed the project.  However, it seems the BN government is attempting to do just that, since they have wheeled out top surgeons over the past week to praise the hospital that cannot perform operations!

But the lack of oxygen is not the only problem with the hospital.  All the equipment for the project was ordered nearly ten years ago, in expectation of a completion date in 2006.  We photographed equipment and beds still unwrapped in empty corridors, as only Floor 3 of the building is actually being used.  Because the equipment is now so dated, doctors say it is already too old for modern heart surgery and should long ago have been replaced.

Further, much of the equipment no longer meet necessary hygiene recommendations, which have been introduced to protect patients from fatal infections.  Even if doctors were to try to use such equipment they are clearly concerned that the whole range of instruments and scanners and equipment may not be functioning correctly since they have laid in mothballs for so many years!

These and numerous further questions surrounding the equipment and expenditure at Kota Samarahan Heart Hospital have been hidden by ministers.  With so little public accountability and no scrutiny of the contracts and expenditures there are huge question-marks over where the money has actually gone and what proportion went in profit to middle-men like George Chan’s own mistress.

Hasty re-branding - the old sign for the original private hospital the Sarawak International Medical Centre has been shabbily covered up with a new banner advertising a public 'Heart Hospital' instead!

Insiders on the project have told Sarawak Report that they quarrelled with Ms Foo over proposals to purchase cheap beds and label them as expensive cardiac beds – the price difference between the two brands was RM2,400 instead of RM48,000!   One insider even says he was summoned by Sulaiman Taib, son of the Chief Minister and husband of George Chan’s daughter Anisa to explain why he was being ‘difficult’.  Sulaiman allegedly threatened “we can get rid of you immediately” – even though he had no official responsibility for the project.

The full extent of this scandal is still under investigation.  However, it is abundantly clear that the sick people of Sarawak have been robbed and cheated of the proper medical treatment that they have paid this BN Government to provide.

On his visit to Sarawak last week , therefore, the Prime Minister first opened a new hospital in Belaga that has no doctors.  He then opened a new Heart Hospital in Kuching where the doctors cannot perform operations on their patients!  What kind of record is that?

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