KUALA LUMPUR: The financial irregularities in the Armed Forces Fund Board (LTAT) will be tabled in Parliament and made public.
Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu said he was mulling lodging a police report to facilitate alleged wrongdoings by LTAT officers.
He said the drastic drop in LTAT dividends for the financial year 2018 was the result of irregularities of previous years’ accounts by the management.
Thus, LTAT was able to declare a dividend of only two per cent for this year, compared with a minimum of six per cent paid over the past four and a half decades.
“The auditor-general revealed that LTAT’s audit reports for 2016, announced a year later, were inaccurate and we had to rectify the said accounts.
“The excess dividends paid out in the past amounted to over RM500 million.
“We are taking remedial measures to correct this and come out with the actual (accounting) report,” he said after a media appreciation luncheon at Hotel Istana Kuala Lumpur.
Mohamad said there were also inappropriate investments made by LTAT through the over-RM500 million takeover of the Automated Enforcement System (AES).
The AES, implemented on Sept 22, 2012, is the road safety enforcement system to monitor all federal roads, highways and expressways in Malaysia.
“Owing to the investment in AES, LTAT was deprived of the RM500 million which could have generated some RM30 million in interest, if deposited in a bank,” he said.
He said it was also discovered that LTAT’s former chief executive officer had a vested interest through owning large shares where the board had invested.
LTAT will hold a media conference on Friday to announce how tthey will move forward and make amendments for the past irregularities.
Among the measures that are expected to be taken are to rectify the accounts and to ensure that improper investments will be reinvested elsewhere and more appropriately.
On the Defence White Paper to be tabled in December, Mohamad said there were public campaigns in the pipeline to successfully increase the intake of non-Malays in the Armed Forces.
He added a large number were keen to serve in the navy and air force, with East Malaysian bumiputeras showing a keen interest in joining the Royal Rangers Regiment.
The White Paper, which charts out a 10-year plan for the country’s defence, is modelled after those from New Zealand, Australia, Britain and Germany.