Scandal in Malaysia's biggest defence deal bogs down Umno ahead of election

The Littoral Combat Ship for the Royal Malaysian Navy under construction by Boustead Heavy Industries Corporation. PHOTO: BERNAMA
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KUALA LUMPUR - A multibillion-dollar scandal over long-delayed naval vessels has not just ignited a blame game in Malaysia's Parliament, it now threatens ruling party Umno's hopes of holding an early election this year and winning it.

Six littoral combat ships (LCS) were commissioned in 2011, without open tender, to be built by Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS) and delivered from 2019. So far RM6 billion (S$1.86 billion) of the RM9 billion cost has been paid out, with little to show for it. Not even the designs for these vessels have been completed.

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