Firm’s ‘rep’ in vaccine offer under probe for suspected cheating

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The offer of two million doses of the Sinovac vaccine to Penang by a verbally-appointed representative of a Hong Kong-based company is suspected to be an attempt to deceive the state government, say police.

Penang police chief Sahabudin Abd Manan said the writer of the letter had admitted sending the letter to chief minister Chow Kon Yeow as a representative of Xintai Development Enterprise Ltd.

“He claims the appointment was made verbally and he is not the company’s managing director as stated in the letter. During the investigation, he admitted that the signature on the letter was his,” he said in a statement today.

Bernama

Sahabudin said they were in the preliminary stages of the investigation and police will be reaching out to the company in Hong Kong to verify its registration status and ascertain the role of the writer.

He said so far, six police reports on the matter had been lodged by individuals representing political parties and from the chief minister’s office, adding that the investigation is under Sections 420 and 511 of the Penal Code.

On May 18, Chow told a joint press conference with his predecessor, Lim Guan Eng, that a private company had offered to donate the vaccines to the state but had been blocked by the federal government.

The next day, Khairy called the offer a “scam” and said his office had been unable to find evidence that the offer was real or that the company named in the letter was legitimate. His office then lodged a police report.

The man involved told reporters in Kota Kinabalu that the offer by his head office in Hong Kong was genuine.

His statement has been recorded by Sabah police, who are aiding Penang police in the investigation. – FMT


Earlier reports:

May 21, Penang CM apologises over vaccine donation issue

May 20: Donor: Vaccine offer to Penang is genuine

May 20: Vaccine offer to Penang bogus, company doesn’t exist