Naim confident of completing ‘rescued’ schools

KUCHING: Naim Holdings Bhd is very confident of completing construction on ‘rescued’ school projects in Limbang and Lawas despite very challenging circumstances.

The company is expecting to complete work on SK Menuang, Limbang in September, while the SK Limbang, Limbang and SK Long Sukang, Lawas projects are expected to be ready in December — long-awaited good news for the affected students, parents and Ministry of Education.

Naim group managing director Datuk Hasmi Hasnan disclosed in a statement to The Borneo Post yesterday that these schools are part of the works package allocated to Sebiro Holdings Sdn Bhd, Naim’s joint venture partner for the contract.

“Under the joint works package awarded by the client, Naim was allocated eight schools, while Sebiro was allocated five. While we have completed the schools under our scope as scheduled, Sebiro has performance-related issues in relation to these three schools. As such, these three schools were categorised as ‘sick projects’,” said Hasmi.

Hasmi said in the interest of the schools and their students, Naim decided to ‘rescue’ the projects.

“We took over as lead partner for the projects and took control of all activities in February 2013. Currently, we are carrying out all works.

“As a good corporate citizen, we have a duty to deliver all projects on time, though in certain situations, this can be challenging,” said Hasmi.

Work progress for all the schools, he said, has been satisfactory since Naim took over.

“Since we took control, there was a marked improvement in work progress. With the support of our dedicated staff, subcontractors, consultants and our client, we have managed to record about 15 per cent to 25 per cent work progress so far.

“Currently, we have completed approximately 83 per cent, 86 per cent and 62 per cent for SK Limbang, SK Menuang and SK Long Sukang respectively. We will be deploying more resources such as manpower and materials to the work sites after Hari Raya. In fact, we have increased the manpower on site by more than five-fold since we took over.”

Hasmi also revealed that the ‘rescue’ mission was not without its price.

“So far, we have spent about RM19 million for the three schools and we expect to spend another RM9 million to complete the remaining works.

“As we are ‘rescuing’ the projects from a previous party, other challenges include catching up on works, confronting unhappy previous subcontractors, previous debts and liquidated and ascertained damages, which we are trying to manage,” he said.

Hasmi stressed that Naim is committed to honour its obligations to the client, where it has established a good track record in successful project completions, resulting in award-winning projects such as SRK and SMK Merbau, Miri, which won the CIDB Malaysia Construction Industry Excellence Award for Medium Scale Building Project in 2003.

Naim is one of Malaysia’s largest Class A Bumiputera Contractors in terms of market capitalisation, listed on the Main Board of Bursa Malaysia and with a wide business interest ranging from construction, property development and more recently, oil and gas.

It has a strong track record in completing projects on time, on specs and on budget, with some projects completed ahead of schedule.

Naim has won a total of 15 awards, a testament to its capability and achievement in the industries which it operates.

To date, Naim has built more than 16,000 homes and completed about RM3.2 billion worth of projects.