Saturday 13 Apr 2024
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KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 7): Amid rumours swirling around the award of the Multi-Lane-Fast-Flow (MLFF) system, Works Minister Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi said Putrajaya has yet to make a final decision on the RM3.46 billion project.

He said letters of agreement that were inked in 2021, providing approval in principle for the implementation of the new tolling system, only enabled those involved to present proposals.

“They need to show their proof of concept, which needs a lot of work before coming to fruition. So don’t sweat and don’t make assumptions and hurl accusations because if you say the proof of concept is poor, then the deal won't go through,” the Malay Mail portal quoted him as telling reporters on Thursday.

“The key here is we must let them present their proposal up till December 2024,” he added.

The MLFF is a barrier-free system. The MLFF project plans to replace the existing booth-based toll collection system with an overhead structure called a gantry that will collect tolls using radio-frequency identification devices (RFID) that work together with an automated number plate recognition (ANPR) system.

This is envisioned to cut down congestion by turning all entrances and exits on highways into obstruction-free lanes.

Nanta was reportedly cognisant of media reports that in July, a private entity had organised a briefing alongside the Malaysian Highway Authority and the Ministry of Works, to present their proposal to highway concessionaires on the implementation of the MLFF system, much to the ire of the concessionaires.

The privately-held entity is said to be 60%-controlled by YTL Corp Bhd, while the remaining 40% is owned by a state-owned entity.

Nanta said news reports written on the matter insinuate that the government had already decided on the award of the MLFF project, adding that those who signed the 2021 agreement have the “right to be upset”.

The YTL-linked proposal reportedly garnered pushback from toll concessionaires that criticised the lack of track record that the private-held entity had, and the concessionaires were concerned that allowing a third-party to take over toll collection would result in leakages.

On Thursday, Nanta quelled one of these concerns by confirming that the concessionaires will still have the right to collect toll charges as per the agreements with the government that are still in force.

Edited ByS Kanagaraju
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