Sapura Energy ‘bailout’ is ‘perverse Najibnomics’, says Rafizi
Published: Mar 22, 2022 4:06 PM
Updated: 4:43 PM
Former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak has been accused of prioritising the business elite in suggesting that the government bailout Sapura Energy Bhd.
In a statement, former Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli said such money was better used to bolster small enterprises, youths, study loans and other uses that benefit the wider public.
“I will present more figures in the coming days to remind the public that they must never again be fooled by Najib’s idea of managing the economy,” said Rafizi (above), while adding that the idea was “songsang” (perverse).
A subsidiary of conglomerate Sapura Group, Sapura Energy has been making losses since 2019. For the financial year ending Jan 31, 2022, Sapura Energy posted a loss of RM8.9 billion.
Rafizi said while he sympathised with the staff at Sapura Energy, it is unfair to use billions in public funds to save a few corporate figures.
He said billions had already been pumped into Sapura Energy that was still making losses despite high global fuel prices.
PETALING JAYA: PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli says that money used to bail out ailing oil and gas company Sapura Energy Bhd could be put to better use to serve the rakyat.
Rafizi was responding to a call by former prime minister Najib Razak to save Sapura from going bankrupt.
“If Najib’s call is heeded, the rakyat’s money that could be used to build the expertise and skills of small entrepreneurs, youths, provide educational loans and the like will continue to be allocated to protect a handful of elites,” Rafizi said in a statement today.
“When these elites led luxurious lifestyles, they never cared about their responsibility to provide a good return on investment to the rakyat.”
In a statement yesterday, Najib urged the government to provide loans or instruct Petronas or Khazanah Nasional to take over ownership of Sapura Energy from Permodalan Nasional Bhd (PNB), which owns 40% of the company.
Apart from stating that 10,000 high-paying jobs would be lost and around 4,500 vendors or suppliers would be affected if Sapura were to go bankrupt, Najib also said this would have a dire effect on local investors.
While he sympathised with the plight of the Sapura staff facing an uncertain future, Rafizi said that spending billions of ringgit on Sapura at a time when businesses and employees across the country are also facing tough times was unfair.
He also said billions of ringgit had already been injected into Sapura over the past decade.
“Despite this, Sapura continued to experience financial problems at a time when crude oil prices are at high levels,” he said, adding that this was in contrast to other oil and gas companies which benefited handsomely after crude oil prices spiked over the past year.
“I will continue to monitor this issue and present some figures in the coming days to remind the people not to be fooled again by Najib’s idea of economic management
“I am waiting to see if he will reply to my statement as he has been so passionate about answering issues on his social media.
“With my return to the political arena, I hope to provide feedback on every one of Najib’s perverse ideas.”