By Geryl Ogilvy
KUCHING, Nov 29: The state government taking up equity in Zecon Medicare Sdn Bhd is purely a corporate investment venture with commercial consideration based on projected positive returns.
According to the State Financial Secretary’s Office, the state had taken proper and thorough due diligence process and risk-return analysis, of which a professional financial-business consultant and corporate legal counsel were engaged to assist in carrying out the investment analysis.
“The state always intensifies its efforts in exploring opportunities for new revenue streams through commercial endeavours or fiscal revenue so as to ensure the sustainability of the state’s sound financial position.
“Notwithstanding this, the state government at all times ensure its financial affairs are managed in the most prudent and disciplined manner, where the principle of good governance is upheld,” it said in a statement today
The State Financial Secretary’s Office was responding to Stampin MP Chong Chieng Jen, who recently queried on Sarawak government’s involvement in a child specialist hospital project in Kuala Lumpur through a joint venture with Zecon Medicare.
The State Financial Secretary’s Office in the statement pointed out that Zecon Medicare had a stable business model and was given a long-term concession agreement that was entered into with the federal government, represented by the Education Ministry and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
“Besides investment in Zecon Medicare, the state has an investment in Normah Medical Specialist Centre in Petra Jaya, Kuching, and owns the building of the Pusat Jantung Negara located in Kota Samarahan.
“With regards to the Petra Jaya Hospital project, it is under the purview of the federal government, not the state. So, it is a prerogative of the federal government to handle delays in projects under its control,” the statement continued.
On Sunday (Nov 25), Chong, who is also Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs, told a press conference that the state government had no business to be involved in hospital development outside Sarawak when they are complaining about poor healthcare in the state.
He found it ironic that the state has been having issues with building hospitals in Sarawak but still had the resources to build a hospital in the peninsula while complaining that Putrajaya had been siphoning the state’s resources.
Chong said also Zecon Medicare was the same company that undertook the delayed Petra Jaya Hospital project.
He revealed that the child specialist hospital costs about RM606 million to build, where the State Financial Secretary’s Office owns 3.92 million shares of the project, while Zecon Medicare owns 4.4 million shares. — DayakDaily