A-G: Let wasted millions be a lesson to the Government

PETALING JAYA - Millions of ringgit in taxpayers' money wasted on futsal courts which lay abandoned or in disrepair across the country should serve as a lesson to the Government, said Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang.

"I hope they have learnt their lesson," he said when contacted.

He said the Starprobe report on the issue was already comprehensive and was not planning to conduct a separate investigation.

Ambrin said the ministers involved have already responded by saying these futsal courts should have been maintained by the communities for whom they were built. "I have no further comment," he said.

On Saturday, The Star front paged that a large number of 1Malaysia futsal courts, built at a cost of RM150,000 (S$58,000) each, were in shambles because no one was in charge of maintaining them.

The Star team had checked out more than 100 of these courts in seven states and found many in obvious neglect.

Former Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek had said that the Government's responsibility was to build the courts and these facilities were handed over to sports associations in the respective areas to manage, maintain and operate.

Public Accounts Committee chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed also said they would not be investigating the case, citing lack of resources.

"I don't have the staff. We will leave it to the Auditor-General," he said.

However, he said the case did not involved fraud or misappropriation of funds.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said that there were 1,870 futsal and multi-purpose courts nationwide.

He said the ministry's audit records showed that only about 10 per cent of the courts were heavily damaged and many of these were built eight years ago.