Conglomerate Sime Darby Bhd's deal to acquire a 51% equity in Institut Jantung Negara (IJN) has been postponed until an indepth review has been undertaken by the relevant ministries, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced here today.
Najib, who is also Finance Minister, told a press conference that the ministries which would undertake the review include the Ministries of Finance and Health as well as the Economic Planning Unit.
IJN is operated by IJN Holdings Sdn Bhd, which is wholly-owned by the Ministry of Finance.
Just yesterday, Sime Darby said that the government had in principle given the nod for it to acquire the controlling stake in IJN Holdings.
Najib said even if the acquisition takes place, the governemnt would not sacrifice its social responsibility to the people.
"If IJN was passed on to Sime Darby, it means that the government's contribution for surgical operations will continue," he said.
Najib said the government has given its approval in principle to Sime Darby to acquire IJN with the condition that IJN's social responsibility would not be sidelined.
He also said that the review would take several months.
However, Najib said that the time factor was not important. "What was important was that the decision would benefit the people and make IJN a renowned heart centre in the world.
Why the sudden change of heart? Is it because of the Kuala Terengganu by-election? At least BN has one issue less to answer.
My hunch is to let the deal be postponed until after the by-election. If BN wins the deal is ON but if BN is defeated then the deal will be OFF.
So people.........if you want IJN to be the hospital for the "rakyat", lets make sure PAS wins the by-election on 17 January 2009.........
Read here and here.