Tower Controller to Captain Loke: Did we hear calls of Mayday! Mayday! Mayday!
‘Captain’ Loke: “Yes, it’s a distress call. It’s one week to 1 October and my officers in the Ministry of Transport and I are running helter-skelter to find ways to implement the RM23 Passenger Service Charge (PSC) reduction which I had promised my good friends.
Tower Controller: Surely as minister you can do what you want.
‘Captain Loke’: The MAHB and MAVCOM are not kowtowing to me as they claim I had blindly announced the RM23 PSC reduction just to please ….”
Tower Controller: “Please get offline. We’re sorry but these are not issues that warrant a Mayday call!
“At best, they are “Shiok Sendiri” issues brought upon by yourself.”
Jokes aside! The arrogance of power has overwhelmed Transport Minister Anthony Loke alias Captain Loke.
He thought he was super powerful and could do as he pleased in total disregard of the MAVCOM Act, 2015.
Bottomline: A review of the PSC can only be done by the Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM) and not Captain Loke.
Section 46 of MAVCOM Act
For background story please read “YB Loke Has No Power to Reduce RM23 PSC” and “Tower To ‘Captain’ Loke: You’re Loke-ing In The Wrong Way!”.
It is most surprising that the little napoleons in MOT did not advise Captain Loke or he didn’t take their advice before he made the silly announcement on the RM23 PSC reduction that has now brought him into disrepute.
The ‘Shiok Sendiri’ RM23 PSC Deduction
Yours truly has been informed that many airlines except one departing from KLIA-2 and other airports except KLIA are charging the full RM73 PSC. Quite rightly so because ‘Captain’ Loke’s ‘Shiok Sendiri’ RM23 PSC reduction is not lawful as it has not been gazetted by MAVCOM. All airline under IATA will only amend their fare inclusive of the PSC rate when the PSC rate is gazetted. The ‘Captain’ Loke’s “Shiok Sendiri’ RM23 PSC reduction shall remain ‘Captain Loke’s ‘Shiok Sendiri’ Special as far as the airlines under IATA are concerned.
Of course, there is only one airline charging RM50 PSC instead of the gazetted RM73 PSC. Well, it is entitled to charge as low as RM10 or zero PSC as long as it pays the full RM73 for each passenger on international flight to MAHB. MAHB will definitely bill this particular airline the full RM73 because it is the gazetted PSC.
The Travel Date From October 1 – 8
The airlines below are charging RM73 PSC departing from KLIA2, Penang International Airport and Kota Kinabalu Airport. These airlines are adhering to the law.
Indigo Airlines departing from KLIA-2 to Delhi;
Qatar Airways departing from Penang to Doha;
China Southern Airlines departing from Kota Kinabalu to Guangzhou, and
Jeju Air departing from Kota Kinabalu to Seoul.
Let’s see what Captain Loke does from now on until after 1 October.
We all know him to make u-turns, like when he postponed the implementation of another half baked decision on VEP (Vehicle Entry Permit) for Singaporean car owners entering Malaysia, HERE.
Updates on 26-9-2019 @ 8:30 pm: A little bird in MOE has informed yours truly that today the Tuan Mohamad Azhan bin Amir a.k.a.“Hebat One”, the TKSU of MOE, has been called by the police for his statement to be recorded. Lets hope that the police report by the “Hebat One” was not an act of covering up the RM340 million tablet scandal involving the little napoleons in PADU/MOE. The ‘Hebat One” should take note that a police report can be a double edge sword. Lets also hope that the police will now open up the big can of worms in PADU and MOE.
Updates on 25-9-2019 @ 5:30 pm:
A little bird in Ministry of Education (MOE) has informed yours truly that TKSU of MOE who is also the chairman of JK Pemandu, En Mohamad Azhan Bin Md Amir, has lodged a police report this afternoon. After having published ten parts on the tablet scandal worth RM340 million in PADU/MOE, the said TKSU was awoken from his slumber with the realisation on the seriousness of the scandal where public fund (MCMC Fund) of about RM270 million had been put to waste.
It is most unprecedented that En Mohamad Azhan Bin Md Amir, who is of TKSU standard, saw it fit to personally lodge a police report that was shrouded in secrecy. Hebat la TKSU ni! Normally the TKSU will instruct an officer of the ministry to lodge a police report on a wrong doing. May be he is a hands on high ranking officer and he would like to do it himself. Then he should not be shy to call a press conference to inform Malaysians that he has lodged a police report about the scandalous tablet project or others. Nevertheless, he should be congratulated for a job well done for lodging the police report for whatever objectives.
It is still unknown what was his police report all about. One thing for sure is that the said TKSU was jumping like a “kera kena sambal belacan“! Wonder why? His police report was a bit late but it is better late than never. We can only hope that the police will investigate into this scandalous project that cost the rakyat a whopping RM270 million!
Please stay tuned for Part 11.
The high-ranking officers in PADU Corporation (PADU) are mere “financial illiterates”, HERE, perhaps by design for them to do what they had been doing and still trying to do now. To put it mildly they are a bunch of spin doctors in the top management of PADU and they are still treating PADU as their cash cow.
It was transpired that during the meeting of Jawatankuasa Pemandu (JK Pemandu) of MOE that PADU had tabled numerous versions of its Financial Reports for year ending 31 December 2018. JK Pemandu also stated in its minutes of meeting that in every of PADU’s Financial Reports submitted to JK Pemandu were inconsistent containing items spent without authority or ‘punca kuasa’. (“urus setia mendapati setiap laporan tersebut yang dikemukakan sama ada tidak konsisten, mempunyai ralat dan perincian item yang tidak dapat ditentukan punca kuasanya.”)
JK Pemandu of MOE Meeting on 18 July 2019
JK Pemandu had decided that PADU to table the full details of its Financial Report as required by ‘Jawatankuasa Teknikal Program ICT Sekolah KPM’ (JK Teknikal) to its secretariat by 22 July 2019 for discussion in its next meeting.
On 18 July 2019, TKSU of MOE, En Mohamad Azhan Bin Md Amir, chaired the JK Pemandu meeting, En Ahmad Izzat bin Ahmad Zaki, the ‘Creative’ Financial Officer of PADU was also present. During the said meeting TKSU recorded that said JK Teknikal had not received any feedbacks on those issues in connection with acquisition and financial report that were tabled on 5 July 2019 have not been approved. TK SU also brought up the issues below for discussion:
- “JK Siasatan Tadbir, Urus, Perolehan & Kewangan Kerajaan” (JK Siasatan) still investigating the RM340 million tablet project. JK Siasatan had discovered matters where terms of contract were not followed like payments made by PADU based on Statutory Declaration from Utusan.
- On 5 July 2019 JK Teknikal had decided that its secretariat to record down all procedures used by PADU not in accordance with the terms of contract for the attention and actions by JK Pemandu as advised by the legal advisor of KPM.
- PADU to cooperate with BSTP to produce a report supported by documentary cooperate evidence. The said report to be tabled in the next JK Pemandu meeting. Yours truly has been told that no such report had been tabled in the following JK Pemandu meeting.
- This blog was also discussed during the said meeting and opinions were sought.
- The ‘Creative’ Financial Officer of PADU, En Ahmad Izzat Ahmad Zaki, asked for the view of JK Pemandu pertaining to the ‘Surat Setuju Terima’ (SST), which had been signed by PADU on 26 April 2018 and paid a total sum of RM18,402,690.25, HERE.
- JK Pemandu put on record that it had decided on 17 April 2018 Phase 6 to be postponed until and after 14th GE and yet PADU proceeded to sign the SST without the knowledge of JK Pemandu. Therefore, PADU had been asked to resolve the said SST and payment of RM18,402,690.25 on the condition that there will be no loss to the Government. It must be noted that out of the RM18,402,690.25, RM10,402,690.25 was paid to Dato’ Siew Ka Wei’s outfit, Redberry Sdn Bhd, HERE. Redberry Sdn Bhd was never a party to the agreement between PADU and Utusan or Utusan and Epiweb Sdn Bhd for the scandalous RM340 million tablet project.
- With regards to what had been disclosed by this blog on issues and matters carried by PADU not in accordance with the procedures cannot be discussed as advised by MOE legal advisor because the said matters have been scheduled for discussion at the coming Public Account Committee (PAC) in Parliament.
Up to this date, the Financial Report 2018 of PADU has not been approved by JK Teknikal and/or JK Pemandu. The minutes looks so serious but no drastic action. It is business as usual in PADU!
Dato’ Siew Ka Wei’s Outfits Received RM70.6 Million From Special Purpose Vehicle Bank Account
PADU had been making payment to a special purpose vehicle bank account known as “Utusan-Epiweb Collection Account”. There was no basis for PADU to pay through this special purpose bank account for the failed RM340 million tablet project. PADU had paid a total of RM267,738,536.92 from fund received from MCMC into the said special purpose bank account. A total sum of RM70.6 million was paid out from this special purpose bank account to Redberry Sdn Bhd, which is wholly owned by Ancom Bhd, and Nylex Bhd, a subsidiary of Ancom Bhd, HERE.
At the material time, there was no public announcement in Bursa KL by Ancom Bhd and Nylex Bhd on the purpose of the receipt of RM70.6 million. Surely this must be of serious concerns for Securities Commission (SC) and Bursa KL. Reports have been lodged with SC and Bursa KL for failing to announce about the “transactions” involving RM70.6 million.
Redberry Sdn Bhd, Ancom Bhd and Nylex Bhd are NOT parties to the agreements between PADU and Utusan or Utusan and Epiweb Sdn Bhd. Until today PADU and/or MOE are still playing dumb about this payment.
Dato’ Siew Ka Wei is the executive chairman of public listed company Ancom Bhd and Group MD of Nylex Bhd. Amcom Bhd is the owner of Redberry Media Group (Redberry. ) Redberry is the owner of Malay Mail. Datuk Wong Sai Wan is the editor in chief of Malay Mail and director of several of Dato’ Siew Ka Wei’s outfits, one of which is Titanium Compass Sdn Bhd (Titanium Compass). Prior to GE 14th, Titanium Compass had been awarded with 10 year exclusive advertising space contract in MRT station.
On 9 January 2019 Dato’ Siew Ka Wei and his media specialist of Redberry Media Group, Ms Elizabeth Ken were arrested and detained by MACC for four days in connection with the ‘Speedy Gonzales’ RM99.7 million deal between Geeko Tech Sdn Bhd with Tourism Malaysia (TM) in 2018 (prior to GE14) when Dato Siew Ka Wei was the chairman ion TM. Ms Elizabeth Ken is the media specialist of Redberry Media Group and CEO fo Geeko Tech Sdn Bhd, HERE.
Datuk Musa Yusuf, the shameless DG of Tourism Malaysia
Datuk Musa Yusuf, the newly appointed DG of TM, was also in indirectly involved in the said RM99.7 million deal, which was evaluated, negotiated and sealed within one day. He was the president of KOPEMA and KOPEMA is a shareholder of Geeko Tech. On 19 January 2018 when Datuk Musa was the TM director for Promotion of Asia and Africa he devised a scheme to appoint Geeko Tech to do a so-called “kajian” that finally appointed Geeko Tech for the RM99.7 million deal, HERE.
The “Tidak Apa” JK Pemandu of MOE
What is strange is: JK Pemandu of MOE will just meet and made their critical comments with no further action whatsoever. One would have thought that a high powered committee of MOE would have lodged a report with the police or MACC. It chose to remain in the state of inertia! It was due to this innate “Tidak Apa” behavior from top to bottom in the MOE that have encouraged those spin doctors and manipulators to thrive in PADU. These spin doctors have now transformed into financial ‘monsters” with immunity!
It would appear that the financial ‘monsters’ in PADU must have got something on their bosses in PADU and MOE, hence the defiance and immunity.
Ministry of Education and Ministry of Communications & Multimedia Are Playing Dumb
The Minister of Education and his KSU are still playing dumb like dead wood over the scandalous RM340 million tablet project.
Despite all the promises that report will be lodged with MACC over the abuse of MCMC Funds in 16 July 2019, HERE, it is also mind boggling why the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia is still dragging its feet in reporting the matter to MACC. It is very strange isn’t it?
Are the two Ministers YB Dr Maszlee Malik and YB Gobind Singh Deo trying to protect the financial ‘monsters’ in PADU and little napoleons in MCMC?
SC and Bursa KL
So far there is no news of the development of the reports lodged with SC and Bursa KL on the failure to make public announcements by Ancom Bhd and Nylex Bhd about the “transactions” involving RM70.6 million of public fund.
Stay Tuned – Part 11
Updates on 10 September 2019 2 11:00 pm: MAHB had obtained judgment of RM40.7 million against AirAsia and AirAsia X for outstanding PSC. On 10 September 2019 MAHB had applied to the High Court for a Garnishee Order to garnish said judgment debt from the three bankers of AirAsia, HERE.
Updates on 10 September 2019 @ 4:00 pm: Today MAVCOM has issued a press statement stating that it has found AirAsia and AirAsia X violating sub paragraph 3 (2) of Malaysian Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016 (MACPC) for charging processing fees for payment of air fare by credit card, debit card separate from their base fares. AirAsia and AirAsia X have been fined RM200,000 each, HERE. Let us see how long will it take the powerful ‘Captain’ Loke to issue a statement to reprimand AirAsia and AirAsia X for violating the said Code and taking the traveling public for a ride.
Malaysia’s infamous AirAsia pilot, ‘Captain’ Loke who is also our ‘venerated’ Transport Minister, keeps loke-ing the wrong direction in matters related to aviation. It is a sad case to say the least.
He has steered his ministry into turbulence at least over two issues that demand what is required of a composed pilot – control the aircraft and stay clear of obstacles and hazards.
His decision-making process on the collapse of the Total Airport Management System (TAM) on 25 August and the unilateral reduction of RM23 Passenger Service Charge (PSC) for KLIA2 and other airports, except for KLIA, can be considered:
- Errors arising from biases.
- As well as a breakdown in the processing of information coming in.
The Unilateral RM23 PSC Reduction
Yours truly would like to believe that by mere coincidence ‘Captain’ Loke set the reduction of RM23 PSC, which so happens to be the exact amount of reduction demanded by his good friend, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, HERE. May be great men DO think alike after all!
In an immediate response, Tony Fernandes announced that a special offer known as “Anthony Loke’s Special’, HERE.
God knows what the “offer” is because Tony didn’t announce the details of his special “offer”. Was this to mark ‘Captain’ Loke’s special contributions to AirAsia?
Only MAVCOM Can Gazette PSC Not ‘Captain’ Loke
Under the MAVCOM Act 2015 the ‘Captain”/Minister Loke has no power to fix the rate for PSC. The power to review, set and gazette of PSC lies with MAVCOM under the Act. If ‘Captain’ Loke wants the power so badly, please get Parliament to amend the Act to give him the sole power to steer MOT and aviation industry according to his and/or his friends’ whims and fancies!
Lets see whether the Commissioners in MAVCOM are prepared to be stooges of ‘Captain’ Loke and reduce MAVCOM to be rubber stamp. It might be an opportune moment to remind MAVCOM that its existence depends on the RM1 contribution from the travelling public and public confidence of it.
Lets see whether MAVCOM will close its eyes and gazette ‘Captain’ Loke’s RM23 reduction anytime from now so that the said reduction could be implemented on 1 October 2019 as announced by ‘Captain’ Loke recently!
In the interim, we can only hope that the distinguished commissioners in MAVCOM (Datuk Mohd Khairul Adib bin Abd Rahman [KSU of MOT], YA Dato’ Mah Weng Kwai [former Judge of Court of Appeal], Datuk Seri Long See Wool [former officer of MOT], Dato Fauziah Binti Yaacob) will not dance to the tune of ‘Captain Loke’ and to please someone’s ego.
The TAMS Failure
On the night of 25 August, KLIA, which was opened for operation with the Total Airport Management System (TAMS) in June 1998, had a major network failure.
It triggered a system outage at KLIA and KLIA2 which embarrassingly caused flight delays for four days.
Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) has not ruled out the possibility that the network failure was caused by an act of malicious intent.
On 27 August, MAHB lodged a police report and investigations are centred around causing damage through an act of mischief under Section 427 of the Penal Code.
Four suspects named by MAHB in its report have been suspended pending investigations. The police are now investigating the said report, HERE.
On 27 August, Anthony Loke flew into overdrive to immediately announce a six-member task force headed by the secretary-general of Ministry of Transport (MOT), Datuk Mohd Khairul Adib Abdul Rahman, to investigate the breakdown of the TAMS.
The KLIA TAMS System Failure Issue Investigation Committee will also recommend measures to avoid a repeat of the incident. The task force has been given a month to complete its job, HERE.
The breakdown of TAMS was rectified and both KLIA and KLIA2 were back to normal.
This was the first time in 21 years since the opening of KLIA that such outage had occurred in KLIA.
However, KLIA and KLIA2 were not closed. Of course, there were flight delays and inconveniences caused.
The 21-year-old TAMS may need to be replaced. The cost for the new system may be prohibitive but MAHB has to bite the bullet and go for it. It is a one off cost, which will last another 20 years or more. It will also be peace of mind for “Captain” Loke and there would be no need for him to form in lightning speed another Task Force just to address another breakdown, which may be unlikely because of the recent measures taken by MAHB.
Do We Need a Special Task Force?
Did such outage only happen in Malaysia? NO.
There were many incidents of system failures in airports and checkpoints in developed countries like Singapore, United Kingdom, France and the USA with some suffering worse disruptions. Please look at the examples below.
Today AirAsia aircraft caught fire in mid air from Maldive, HERE. Is ‘Captain’ Loke going to set up a task force to investigate into the safety issues in AirAsia to prevent tragedies? Did we hear a big NO from ‘Captain’ Loke? It is ok we do understand your predicament.
Examples Of System Failures At Checkpoints & International Airports
On 16 May 2017, technical glitch in the immigration clearance system at Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints caused massive delay. HERE.
On 1 August 2018, the baggage check-in systems at both terminals 1 and 2 of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport in Mumbai were affected, causing massive delays in issuing of boarding passes and loading baggage.
The glitch was due to the failure of the local area network linking the Airport Management System. HERE.
On 7 August 2019, Heathrow Airport terminals for British Airway (BA) became congested when its computer systems crashed, resulting in 138 flights being cancelled and a further 260 being delayed. At least 35,000 passengers travel plans were put into disarray. HERE.
On 17 August 2019, thousands of travellers at major US airports (JFK, Los Angeles, Dallas-Fort Worth, Dulles etc) faced congested terminals and long lines due to a temporary computer outage that affected the US Customs and Border Protection’s processing systems, HERE.
1 September 2019, after a failure of the common computer and communication systems, French airport authority had significantly reduced flights capacity in several of its airports (Marseille, Bordeaux, Paris, Reims and Brest. HERE.
Did the ministers of transport in those countries became jumpy and set up a task force to investigate?
No. The government of the respective countries left it to their airport authorities to investigate and resolve the problems unlike our eager beaver ‘Captain’/minister Loke.
We can only hope that nervousness of ‘Captain’ Loke was not triggered due to MAHB and/or for his love for … .
‘Captain’/Minister Loke: What Is Your ultimate Agenda?
Yours truly hopes that there is no other agenda here except the eagerness of the minister to show that he was working very hard for the travellers like what he had done to unilaterally reduce the RM23 PSC for KLIA2 and other airports, which will no doubt benefit international travellers. BUT cost the government to the tune of at least RM200 – RM300 millions to make up for the RM23 reduction. Ultimately the rakyat will have to pay for the subsidy.
Coincidentally, “Captain’ Loke’s good friend, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, has been campaigning openly against the RM73 PSC. He wanted a reduction of RM23 for the PSC too. It seemed that ‘Captain’ Loke had plugged the RM23 from the air and it so happened to coincide with the demands of Tan Sri Fernandes.
MAHB Sued AirAsia & AirAsia X For Outstanding PSC & Other Charges
AirAsia refused to collect the RM73 PSC, opting for only RM50. MAHB sued AirAsia and AirAsia X for the shortfall of RM23 PSC and outstanding PSC debt totalling RM40.7 million.
Of course, ‘Captain’ Loke being an extremely concerned minister, immediately offered his services to mediate in the lawsuit, HERE. This was unheard of in world aviation where a minister offered to mediate in a law suit to recover PSC and other debts.
We hope that in future ‘Captain’ Loke will jump in to offer himself as mediator in all disputes between MAHB and all airlines for not collecting full PSC or for owing PSC and/or other charges including aeronautical charges!
Rumour has it that ‘Captain’ Loke has plenty of free time to chair meetings of certain airline. So all airlines could just give him a call and he will chair any meetings for airlines.
Luckily MAHB reject the AirAsia’s offer of mediation, HERE. The High court granted Summary Judgment for the RM40.7 mil against AirAsia and AirAsia X.
‘Captain’ Loke, The Festive Greeter
To digress a little, it must be admitted that ‘Captain’ Loke works extremely hard to the extent that he found special time to board an AirAsia aircraft to wish passengers “Happy Chinese New Year”. No other Minister of Transport had done this before.
We applaud ‘Captain’ Loke for his well-intentioned gesture and hope that he will not restrict it to Chinese New Year only and carry on with his great festive greetings during Hari Raya, Deepavali, Gawai and Christmas to passengers not only for his favourite airline AirAsia but MAS, Malindo, Firefly, MASwings and others. ‘Captain’ Loke, you have done what other ministers never dared to think of doing like unilaterally announcing a reduction of PSC. ‘Captain’ Loke, it is a shame that Tony Fernandes did not recognise your enormous contribution and confer you the title, “Father of AirAsia”. May be it will be announced soon!
Heads To Roll In MAHB
A little bird whispered to yours truly that a powerful man in the aviation industry had sent out a message to the effect that “He will ensure heads in MAHB will roll”. Why? Was it because this powerful person couldn’t get what he wanted from MAHB like he used to?
Lastly, we hope that the all-time powerful ‘Captain’/minister Loke has no other agenda in all his initiatives including to please his friends.
Updates on 5 September 2019 @ 3:30 pm: According to the Business Times report, YB Loke’s recent announcement that PSC rates for international flights from all airports except KLIA will revert back to 2018 level starting on 1 October 2019 will cause negative outlook for Malaysian aviation sector. The RM23 PSC reduction would mean a RM200 million reduction in PSC revenue for the Government. Please read HERE.
Under section 46 of Malaysia Aviation Commission Act, 2015, the task or more appropriately the POWER to review and revise all aviation charges including PSC lies with MAVCOM and not the Minister of Transport. The section clearly states that “MAVCOM shall regulate charges for aviation services”.
Section 46 will be discussed in the later part of this article.
It is clear that the powerful Minister of Transport (MOT), YB Anthony Loke, has clearly usurped the power of MAVCOM, whose powers are clearly enshrined in the said Act.
On 3 September 2019, Minister YB Anthony Loke was absolutely right to enlighten the rakyat that Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) is the operator and the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) is the regulator, and both are government-linked entities. All assets are owned by the Government, HERE.
Beside the above two points, YB Loke’s said statement was misleading to say the least.
- YB Loke had announced that that it was the “Cabinet’s Decision”to reduce the Passenger Service Charge (PSC) from RM73 to RM50 at all airports in Malaysia except for the KLIA effective 1 October 2019.
- YB Loke had said that by reducing the PSC to RM50 for KLIA2 was “to balance with Departure Levy as well as encourage the growth of tourism sector”.
It would appear that YB Loke is the man who really wants equality in Malaysia. Hence the reduction of RM23 applies to ALL airports.
May yours truly ask YB Loke this simple question:
How YB Loke arrived at the reduction of RM23 and not RM24, RM25 or RM30? It must be noted that the RM23 reduction was what Tony Fernandez has been demanding for all along.
Is YB Loke trying to teach Malaysians that airports in Kota Bharu, Langkawi, Subang, Ipoh, Mallaca, Johor Bahru, Kuantan and Penang are of the same size and standard as KLIA2?
The answer to the above question is obviously in the negative. Why YB Loke’s fairness only accorded to travelers from KLIA2 and not other much smaller airports? Travelers from those smaller airports should be accorded with further reduction of PSC, maybe another RM23 because they don’t enjoy the luxuries of KLIA2.
When will the reduction end? It was a silly decision to please certain entity or someone.
Loke: Government To Determine The Rates Of PSC!
YB Loke also said:
“The government has the right to determine the rates of the passenger service charges (PSC) as it owns the airports.”
This statement is too simplistic for a Minister to make. It is just like saying that “the government owns the Parliament buildings and the land, therefore, the government could ignore the Federal Constitution, Standing Orders and existing rules that govern Parliament”.
In fact it was the Government that enacted the MAVCOM Act 2015. Therefore, it was the Government that granted the power under section 46 of the Act to MAVCOM to solely decide on the rates of PSC and NOT the Minister of Transport.
In 2017 MAVCOM had done a thorough study on the equalisation of PSC and gazetted it into law in late 2018. Within a few months after the implementation of the RM73 PSC by the GOVERNMENT, a certain airline went on a rampage to attack MAHB and MAVCOM.
The silence on the matter by YB Loke/GOVERNMENT then was damn deafening.
Instead of telling all airlines to pay up their PSC debts and to collect PSC rates as gazetted, YB Loke saw it fit to tell the world that he would want to mediate the law suit between MAHB and AirAsia. What a joker he is? Who is he to mediate in a law suit?
Why the double standard? Was there anything that we are not supposed to know about the special relationship between YB Loke and … ?
Improving Tourism By The Reduction of RM23 PSC?
If YB Loke really wants to improve tourism then why he didn’t protest against the introduction of Departure Levy? Why there was also no protest against the introduction of Departure Levy by YB Loke’s favourite airline!
Quite frankly, RM23 is not going to be a determinant whether or not tourists will come to Malaysia. Let looks at the PSC in its proper prospective, reducing PSC will only encourage more Malaysians to visit other countries because it is cheaper to fly from KLIA2. Tourists who wanted to visit Malaysia will not be deterred by the RM23 PSC.
Just look at UK, as of 1 April 2019 the PSC for its airports have increased to almost RM400 for long haul economy passengers and RM770 for long haul premium, HERE.
Yet tourists were not deterred by the increased of PSC and not a single airline protested against the exorbitant PSC. In fact tourists visiting UK are on the increase all the times.
It is a fact that Malaysia’s PSC rates are the lowest in the region and yet our tourist numbers are stagnated. Therefore, it is most misleading to say that reduction of RM23 PSC will see the increase of tourists to Malaysia .
The real attraction for tourists to visit a country depends on the overall security, environment, places of attraction, history and policies of the country. So YB Loke please stop treating Malaysians as fools.
YB Loke Said It Was a Cabinet’s Decision! He Must Be a joker!
YB Loke had said that it was a Cabinet’s decision to reduce the RM23 PSC. Was that so?
It is a normal practice for Minister do a proper study on the pro and con, and the impact of the proposals and circulate the proposals to all Ministers to study before presenting a CABINET PAPERS to the Cabinet for discussion and approval.
It is only after the above established practices have been carried out then Cabinet’s Papers will be prepared and presented for discussion and approval by the Cabinet. Other than this, it was just a mere briefing of YB Loke’s decision to the Cabinet, no more no less.
YB Loke should provide answers to these two questions:
- Did the Ministry of Transport (MOT) do a thorough study on the impact of the reduction of RM23 PSC to the aviation industry?
- Did The Minister of Transport present a Cabinet Papers on the matter for discussion and approval before he made the announcement on the reduction of RM23 PSC?
We all know that there was no such Cabinet Papers on the PSC reduction have been prepared and presented to the Cabinet for decision. YB Loke should stop dancing to the tune of his “boss” in the aviation industry.
MAVCOM Is In The Process of Revising The rate PSC
It must be noted that on 12 August 2019 MAVCOM’s executive chairman Dr Nungsari Ahmad Radhi had announced that new PSC will no longer be the same throughout the ALL airports in the country effective 1 January 2020, HERE.
From the MAVCOM’s announcement, it was crystal clear that MAVCOM is in the process of studying the matter. It could not have completed its study on the impact of the new PSC rates within 2 weeks from 12 August 2019. That’s why Dr Nungsari said that the new PSC rates will be effective on 1 January 2020.
It was clear that YB Loke was in the hurry to reduce the RM23 PSC for all airports effective 1 October 2019, which decision had contradicted MAVCOM Chairman who had said that it will differ from airport to airport depending on the facilities provided.
Quite frankly, it is not practical and difficult to evaluate facilities in monetary term from one airport to another.
Equalization of PSC is the easiest and best option implemented in most airports in the world with no protest whatsoever from airline except in Malaysia where the Ministers of Transport can’t wait to entertain the complaints from his good friend, Tony Fernandez.
MAVCOM Had Done A Comprehensive Evaluation Before Implementing Equalization Of PSC In All Airports
It must be noted that in 2017 MAVCOM had done all the studies before revising the PSC for all airports in Malaysia. On 28 December 2017 MAVCOM had gazetted the Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM) (Aviation Service Charges) Amendment Regulations 2017 P.U (A) 427. This regulation was to regulate the equalisation of PSC HERE.
On 17 December 2017, the then executive chairman of MAVCOM, Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad had said that the government will be forced to fork out RM60 million in subsidies if the PSC for long haul international flights between KLIA and KLIA2 are not equalized, HERE.
In less than two years, YB Loke was bent to reduce the said PSC to RM23, we hope that public fund will not be used to subsidise travellers departing from KLIA2 and other airports as envisaged by MAVCOM in 2017.
The said new regulation bt MAVCOM in 2017 was supposed to take effect on 1 January 2018. It was unlawfully postponed by the then spineless Minister of Transport, YB Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, to 1 March 2018 due to protest – you know from who la! It was delayed until late 2018 (well after GE14) before the equalization of PSC was implemented even though it was already gazetted into law.
Within two years, YB Loke was in the big hurry to reduce the RM23 PSC effective 1 September 2019 and could not wait until 1 January 2020 as announced by MAVCOM. Yours truly wonders WHY!
The ‘Public Defenders’ AirAsia & AirAsia X Refused To Collect Additional RM23 PSC!
AirAsia and AirAsia X had refused to collect the additional RM23, which is the same amount as announced by YB Loke for KLIA2. The RM73 PSC was gazetted in December 2017 and only enforced by MAHB in February 2019.
MAHB filed an action to recover the combined amount of RM40.73 million in unpaid PSC which included additional PSC of RM23 and combined amount of RM792,381.74 in unpaid late payment charges.
The High Court granted a Summary Judgment, which was based on clear affidavit evidence and no arguable case, against AirAsia and AirAsia X to pay RM40.73 million to MAHB, HERE.
It must be noted that the Judgement Sum of RM40.73 million is for the outstanding PSC owed by AirAsia and AirAsia X up to December 2018. What about the outstanding PSC owed by these two companies from 1 January 2019 onwards?
YB Loke should instruct the two companies to pay up all gazetted PSC up to now or MAHB to take actions to recover. Of course, YB Loke will play dumb on the PSC debts!
The Minister Of Transport Has NO Power To Reduce PSC unilaterally!
Under Section 46 (1)of Malaysia Aviation Commission Act, 2015 states that MAVCOM shall regulate charges for aviation services.
Section 46 (2)of the Act :
“In carrying out its function under subsection (1), the Commission shall have the power to carry out:
- (a) set charges, including maximum charges, or establishing the method for determination of such charges for aviation services;
- (b) reviews of passenger service charges, landing fees, …., and other charges for aviation services at such intervals as the Commission thinks fit; and
- (c) following such reviews, revise any charges set or method established under paragraph (a) as the commission thinks fit.
From the said Section 46 (1) and (2) of the Act, it is crystal clear that Minister of Transport has no power whatsoever to review or revise PSC. The Minister could only direct MAVCOM to review and revise PSC and other aviation charges.
Bearing in mind section 46 of the said Act and with due respect, the obvious conclusion is that the the Minister had no doubt acted ultra vires and usurped the power of MAVCOM.
However, yours truly would like to believe that YB Loke’s action was attributed to the improper advice given by its officers!
Other Airline Should File For Judicial Review
Strictly speaking, a full service airline or someone in the industry could file for judicial review in court to quash the Minister of Transport’s said decision to reduce the PSC from RM73 to RM50. It is highly likely that the Court will strike down the said Minister’s decision for want of lawful power.
YB Loke should not blindly take the advice of his officers or more importantly stop pandering to the demand of certain person’s business model. Malaysia needs an orderly and efficient aviation services.