Sources say IT service provider has received a letter of intent to begin negotiations
KUALA LUMPUR – Iris Corp Bhd has received a letter of intent to begin negotiations with the government over the RM1.2 billion National Integrated Immigration System (NIIS), people familiar with the matter said.
A source said there had been three days of negotiations last week between Iris, Home Ministry officials as well as S5 Holdings Inc director Syed Mohamad Hafiz Syed Razlan.
Iris was not available for immediate comment.
The IT service provider has been a front runner for the NIIS ever since a request for proposal (RFP) was called in 2019, when Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was home minister, after he terminated the project’s predecessor, Sistem Kawalan Imigresen Nasional (SKIN), due to inflated costs.
Estimates put the cost of the NIIS at about RM1.2 billion, a 66% discount from SKIN’s RM3.5 billion. Prestariang Bhd, which was directly awarded the SKIN contract from the then-Barisan Nasional government in 2017, is suing Putrajaya for RM732.86 million in damages.
Muhyiddin would go on to become prime minister while his Bersatu colleague, Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin, took over the Home Ministry portfolio following the change of government in late February last year.
But the RFP also allows for a consortium of companies to bid for the project. Business publication The Edge, citing sources, had reported on August 24 that Iris had put in a bid through a consortium, with S5 being party to the deal.
Also, an S5 shareholder has links to Muhyiddin’s son-in-law, Datuk Adlan Berhan. The Vibes had reported that Avocat Sdn Bhd, which is controlled by businessman Lim Beng Guan, has a 3.62% stake in S5. Lim is a director while Adlan, who is married to Muhyiddin’s daughter, Nabilah, is a shareholder of Agathistwo Jia Sdn Bhd
By : Emmanuel Samarathisa – THE VIBES