RM29 million Tsunami Warning System doesn’t work

After the 2004 tsunami the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) announced with fanfare the setting up of a Tsunami Early Warning System. The initial cost of the system is RM18.7 million that includes 3 floating buoys costing RM1.0 million each. But because of a change in the location of the buoys there was an additional cost of RM10.28 million.

Big shots admiring the tsunami buoy

According to the Auditor-General report, Tsunami Buoy 1 was deployed in March 2006 but was reported lost in February 2010. Tsunami Buoy 2 was deployed in December 2005 but was reported lost in May 2006. And what happened to Buoy 3? It was not deployed at all because permission was not granted by the Phillipines government to located in their waters! It was later reported that this Buoy 3 is defective.

A new buoy was purchased in Sept 2010 to replaced Buoy 1 but again cannot be deployed because the Indonesian government did not allow Malaysian vessel to enter their waters to install the buoy. This brand new buoy is now sitting in a warehouse.

So folks, if there is a tsunami approaching Malaysia in the future there will be NO warning from our Tsunami Warning System. And this is after spending more than RM29 million of taxpayers’ money.

The questions are: why is there an additional cost of RM!0 million for changing the location of the buoys. Why do they have to be located in the waters of neighbouring countries instead of Malaysian waters? If it is absolutely necessary, why was permission not sought and confirmed before proceeding with the project?


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