by FAYYADH JAFFAR
OPPOSITION leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, has asked the government to explain the sale of the Covid-19 tracking app to a private company, and he also questioned the government’s decision to allow the application to be sold to a private company.
Anwar said in a statement that the sale of MySejahtera to a private company raises serious concerns about the management of personal data and the possible misuse of health information of millions of Malaysians.
“Under the open tender system, these facts will be scrutinised by the government and the people. In a system of direct negotiation, what happens is simply akin to the symptoms of awarding companies and individuals close to the government. These include directors who have knowledge and expertise in managing the operation of unclear software or information technology and raise concerns about the logic of awarding these applications in direct consultation.”
“Furthermore, the sale of MySejahtera to a private company only raises concerns about the management of personal data and the possible misuse of health information of millions of Malaysians.”
The government’s decision on this “handover” was decided by the cabinet on November 26, 2021.
Permission was given by the cabinet to the Ministry of Health to appoint MySJ Sdn. Bhd. through a direct negotiation mechanism to take over the MySejahtera application. However, in December 2021, the PAC recommended that the government take over the operation of MySejahtera at no additional cost as the app has now become an important element in the national health system.
Health Ministry officials who testified before the PAC claimed that MySJ Sdn. Bhd. has nothing to do with KPISoft, the company that develops MySejahtera applications as a CSR initiative. KPISoft has since changed the company name to Entomo.
“The allegation that there is no connection between KPISoft/Entomo and MySJ Sdn. Bhd. must be scrutinised and investigated. The directors of MySJ Sdn. Bhd., including the two founders of KPISoft.”
“The directors of MySJ Sdn. Bhd. also include individuals with political and business ties with several parties in the government, including Tan Sri Datuk Seri Shahril Shamsuddin, who was the Chief Executive Officer of Sapura Energy until March 2021, and Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Megat Najmuddin, who was an UMNO division head who later became a senior member of BERSATU,” Anwar added.
Citing the 81.4% ownership of MySJ Sdn. Bhd. by another company, Revolusi Asia Sdn. Bhd., of which 88% is owned by the founders of KPISoft, Anwar said that “71.2% of MySJ Sdn. Bhd. is owned by the two founders of KPISoft who developed the MySejahtera application. To say that there is no connection between KPISoft/Entomo and MySJ Sdn. Bhd. is dishonest.”
Hence, he asked the government to clarify the sale of MySejahtera to a private company instead of allowing the application to be regulated by the MOH.
“Why was the decision made to sell MySejahtera to a private company instead of allowing the application to be regulated by the MOH? Why is the sale of this application not made through an open tender on the basis of transparency?”
Read more: Building trust in MySejahtera app
He also questioned if the government often awards individuals or companies that carry out CSR for the benefit of Malaysians with lucrative contracts; and what is the scope and expertise of MySJ Sdn. Bhd. related to the operation of MySejahtera; and how can the MOH ensure that the data collected by the application will not be misused by third parties, including MySJ Sdn. Bhd.
“Are the terms of the contract subject to the assurances made by the MOH previously regarding personal health data, MySejahtera’s confidentiality policy, and national laws governing the confidentiality of individual data?”
“What are the roles and responsibilities of MySJ Sdn. Bhd. in ensuring that data shared by Malaysians through MySejahtera on the basis of a public mandate will not be used at all for marketing purposes, product development, monitoring, or for discriminatory purposes?”