KUALA LUMPUR: The Prime Ministerâ€™s Department (JPM) clarified that the executive aircraft, Airbus Corporate Jetliner (ACJ320) was purchased to replace the 16-year-old Boeing Business Jet (BBJ).
JPM in a statement here said, the government made the decision to acquire the ACJ320 through a hire-purchase contract for a period of 15 years to replace the BBJ aircraft, which would be disposed to finance the ACJ320 purchase.
The statement was issued by JPM in response to charges that the aircraft was purchased for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razakâ€™s use, made by Parti Keadilan Rakyat Secretary-General, Rafizi Ramli in Parliament here today.
According to JPM, the BBJ aircraft had been utilised by MAS since 1999 before the government obtained the aircraft in 2003 for the use by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
â€œTalks to replace the BBJ were initiated two years ago in view of the increasing cost of aircraft maintenance due to age and safety risk factors.
â€œThe acquisition of the aircraft can reduce operational, management and maintenance costs as the government already has a ACJ319 in the fleet,â€ according to the statement.
According to JPM, in addition to the ACJ319 and ACJ320, the government executive aircraft fleet included smaller planes namely the Falcon acquired in 1989 and the Global Express in 2001. — Bernama