KUALA LUMPUR: Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, whose brother Datuk Haris Onn Hussein recently won a multi-million ringgit security-labelling concession contract for liquor, has denied having any knowledge or connection with Haris’ business.
“I don’t have knowledge and [have] no connection at all as to what my brother does. If there is something, ask him to answer. I will not defend him if he is wrong,” Hishamuddin told reporters at Parliament yesterday.
Hishammuddin was responding to news reports that opposition lawmaker Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua had questioned how Lembah Sari Sdn Bhd, a company controlled by Haris — who is also the cousin of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak — managed to get the RM77 million security-labelling contract without an open tender from the Royal Malaysian Customs.
Hishammuddin stressed that neither he nor his family, including his brother Haris, received any contracts from the ministries which he had headed in the past.
“I have no connections. There is no conflict of interest. He (Haris) has not benefitted,” he said, but added that he could not stop [his family] from making a living as it would be “wrong”.
It was reported by The Edge Financial Daily that Lembah Sari was awarded the contract to design, print, store, supply and distribute banderols (tax stamps) for liquor (including beer) between 2014 and 2019 from Customs on July 21.
This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on October 17, 2014.