By Friends of Zainal Adnan Khairudin in UAE (who’s who in PECD Board here)
This is with reference to a recent Bernama report published in certain media on detention of a Malaysia citizen who was also an employee of PECD in Dubai for allegedly signing two company cheques which were subsequently dishonoured.
In brief, our friend Zainal Adnan Khairudin is being detained by Dubai Police as under the local laws it is a criminal offence to sign cheques “without any funds” (as in this particular circumstance the cheques are used as security cheques in place of pending letter of credit to be released by the issuing bank) even though the signatory merely follows the instructions as an employee.
Twenty four days have already passed and together with certain good government officials, we have been trying within our limitations to assist him and his family as well as coordinating our efforts to release him before being charged in court.
After some hesitancy and delays from PECD to hire a lawyer for his defence, we subsequently hired a personal lawyer as an urgent measure to ensure he has the right legal means to put forward his case and at the same time to advise us on the best available approaches and resources to get him released on bail, pending his case to be heard in Dubai courts.
One of the conditions to release this innocent man from current detention is for PECD to settle immediately the amount owed as per claimed by the supplier which the latter will drop the case. Another condition is for PECD to deposit AED2 millions in court as a bail while settling the dispute under the civil case.
Last twenty four days and counting, we have been hearing some good entertaining stories about PECD’s supposedly actions and ongoing negotiations to settle the dispute with the supplier, but it seems to us there is no end of this waiting game. We understand that PECD’s employees here in Dubai have limited jurisdictions and any forthcoming decisions on this unfortunate event are directly from the board of directors’ (BOD) cushy room.
We may be wrong in guessing that there could be no urgency for the PECD’s BOD to resolve Zainal’s predicaments. However, there is no secret that PECD is facing other pressing problems such as non-salary payments for Dubai employees since August, months of outstanding leasing contracts for staff accommodations, as well as series of pending court cases against PECD from suppliers, subcontractors, creditors and even former employees.
Not to mention few months ago, PECD under the disguise of ‘a Malaysian construction company’ (news attached below) had made into local media headlines for failure to pay its labourers for three consecutive months. The labourers took their angers to the streets of Dubai which at the same time damaged Malaysia’s glorious ‘Truly Asia’ images in the eyes of Dubai cosmopolitan residents. The same report mentioned that this ‘Malaysian construction company’ was reprimanded with severe warnings by UAE authorities.
We also read about PECD’s woes with series of terminations of some existing projects by client due to inability to execute and perform according to the contracts.
On top of this mountain of mess and crises, we knew even though it had not been publicly announced that a Dubai-based investment company had withdrawn its plan for taking some stakes after completing brief due diligence, which speaks volume of PECD’s current standing. Ironically, the earlier announcement of the possible interest by this company during EGM was something to be cherished and applauded by speculators and pundits at KLSE.
Therefore, we honestly have nothing much to expect from PECD with the current dire straits especially when most of top management in Kuala Lumpur will be avoiding Dubai as next travel destination either for business or pleasure in fear of being detained at the airport (since so many cheques are already or going to be dishonoured), nevertheless, as friends of an innocent man who had been serving PECD with sincere commitment for the last ten years before his departure, we would like PECD board members to look themselves into the mirrors and see human sides of themselves during these holy months of Ramadan and Syawal.
Unrealistically though, we would dream to see any member of the PECD board members or top management to be in Zainal’s shoes by replacing him in the detention during Aidilfitri.
Then again, we still have a high hope and regard for all of you as men of honour, integrity and dignity to honour your words by urgently putting your house in order to save Zainal from possible up to three year incarceration as well as to save Malaysia’s image as an Islam Hadhari promoter to the world!
Dubai panel helps 1,500 workers get wages By Mary Nammour 18 July 2007
DUBAI — The Permanent Labour Affairs Committee in Dubai has settled a dispute over unpaid wages of around 1,500 workers who had stopped working last week because their employer, a Malaysian construction company, had not paid them for the third consecutive month.
The workers finally collected their wages on Friday, said Brigadier Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, Head of the Permanent Labour Affairs Committee and Director of the Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department (DNRD).
“The angry labourers had early last week staged a demonstration on Emirates Road near Al Ghusais, demanding payment of wages and arrears.
Inspectors of the said committee responded to the situation and the field teams’ negotiations with the company’s officials resulted in a written pledge from the company to pay the delayed salaries within a maximum of 96 hours.”
“As a result, the company settled the dues on Friday,” Brig Al Marri pointed out, adding, “we gave the company the final notice and urged them to pay the labourers’ wages on time or the matter would be reported to the authorities concerned for legal action.”
The committee chief further said, “Having due wages paid on time is a top priority for the committee. Delaying payment of salaries to workers by any company is a violation of the laws and regulations governing the relation between workers and employers.” He pointed out that such practices affect the social values and the nation’s economy.