Baru asks contractor involved in HDC payment to identify himself publicly

Baru Bian (centre) with Miri MP Dr Michael Teo and PKR women head Zuraida Kamaruddin.-dayakdaily.com

KUCHING: PKR Sarawak chief Baru Bian today advised a contractor named in the Auditor-General Report of being paid by the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) for an undone job to publicly identify himself and the company he is associated with.

“I am surprised that anyone would hold a press conference but instruct the press that his identity is not disclosed, and I am equally surprised that the press complied,” Baru said at a press conference here.

He said if this person is truly blameless and wishes to refute the facts in the AG Report, then he should not be hiding behind anonymity.

“What is that to hide if one is truly innocent of the charges made against one? How does one clean one’s name without identifying himself?” he asked.

The nameless contractor at a press conference in Miri yesterday had accused Baru of not checking his facts before making the allegations against the company.

The latest release of the AG Report had said that HDC paid out RM2.88 million for a work to repaint public housing units in Miri to the contractors.

But the contractors, according to the AG Report, have not started with the repainting work.

Baru, who is also Ba’Kelalan assemblyman, denied that he has tarnished the names of the contractors.

“I merely cited the findings of the AG Report without going into specific details.

“At no instance did I utter any names of persons or companies named in the report.

“I have been falsely accused of tarnishing a nameless company and an equally nameless contractor, and I cannot even sue for defamation as they do not have the honour and the courage to own their own identities.

“This is cowardice as its worst,” Baru said.

He said the nameless contractor should take issue with the AG if he thinks that the report was inaccurate.

“Perhaps, he should consider suing the AG for defamation,” he said to the contractor.

Baru said it is better to let the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission to probe the payment to the contractors.

“The involvement of MACC may be warranted as huge sums of money are involved and the people of Sarawak will be better assured if an independent party is tasked to carry out thorough investigations in this matter,” he said. – dayakdaily.com