Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Of Missing Jet Engines

I was busy at work at around 4.30pm on Monday 21 Dec 2009. My mobile phone beeped - a text message had arrived. It was a Malaysia Kini SMS Alert announcing that "Missing jet engine: PM says govt will wait for the authorities to wrap up their probe before action is taken against the wrongdoers."

Huh?? A missing jet engine? I was immediately jolted out from my working mode into a problem solving mode...

Did Malaysia Kini get it wrong? How does a jet engine go missing? It is mind boggling? Shouldn't the whole jet have gone missing? For example, a jet could go missing when a pilot took off and never came back. Since Malaysia Kini reported it, I can only imagine that the air force personnel have scoured the whole air force base with a fine tooth comb to no avail. But then again, a jet engine devoid of its outer shell and all the other parts that a jet needs, would surely have to be transported out of an air force base? Don't our air force bases have security checkpoints? Didn't someone smell a fish when they see a jet engine being carted out of the air force base?

Argh! Never mind. Anything and everything that can go wrong in Malaysia will surely go wrong. Back to work!!

Over the next few days, I was to read that :
  • it was not only 1 jet engine that went missing but 2 jet engines;
  • those 2 jet engines actually went missing between June and Nov 2007;
  • but the theft was not discovered until May 2008;
  • and the Malaysian citizens heard nothing of it until Dec 2009;
  • a brigadier general and 40 armed forces personnel have been sacked based on alleged involvement and all (EXCEPT the brigadier general) lost their pension and other benefits;
  • some of the personnel involved had been transferred to other positions while the investigation is being carried out;
  • the Attorney General stating that this is indeed a serious issue;
  • the Prime Minister assured all Malaysians that there will be no cover-ups;
  • we were told that no inquiry by the Royal Commission need to be setup as all Malaysians need to trust that the police will do its job.
I ask, why is it that :
  • the public hears only of this missing jet fiasco 2 years after they have gone missing?
  • 40 lower ranking personnel should be sacked and lose their pension and all benefits but a high ranking brigadier general should be sacked but get to keep his pension and all benefits?
  • the Attorney General should only say that it is a serious matter now after the matter has been made public. Would it NOT have been serious had the press not picked up on this matter?
  • the Prime Minister should assure us that there will be no cover-ups? Shouldn't it be that NOTHING would be covered-up without the PM having to say so?
  • we should be TOLD to trust the police? Shouldn't it be that trust be earned and not bought? Shouldn't it be that had we trusted the police, we would not have had to call for an inquiry by the Royal Commission?
And I still hear people telling me that living in Malaysia is not too bad!!!