Meet Haris Onn, the brother of Hishammuddin Hussein.
Hishammuddin is reported as saying, “I tell you the truth, I don’t know what my brother is doing,” in response to a report that appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald.
So I thought I would help shed some light.
Haris spearheads property developer Impiana Land & Development. Its ground-breaking project was at Taman Raintree in Batu Caves. Subsequently, Impiana developed Serene Kiara in Desa Hatamas and then Serene Kiara Residence, both joint-ventures with the same land-owner on Malay reserve land.
He is managing director of Konsortium Lebuhraya Utara-Timur (KL) Sdn Bhd (Kesturi), a partnership between him, Malaysian Resources Corporation Bhd (MRCB) and Ekovest Bhd. Kesturi had successfully bid for the Duta-Ulu Kelang Expressway (DUKE) project on a build-and-operate basis over a concession period of 34 years.
He is currently the executive chairman of Lembah Sari Sdn Bhd (formerly Liberal Technology Sdn Bhd?), which manufactures and trades in security ink and banderols (tax stamps). (Source: The Edge, 6 December 2010.)
In 2004, the Customs Director General signed an agreement for the supply of tax stamps with Liberal Technology Sdn Bhd. Under the RM30m agreement, Liberal Technology would supply importers with the bandroll tax labels to be affixed to imported cigarette boxes. The bandrolls cost seven sen each and the security ink five sen per dot. The cost would be absorbed by cigarette manufacturers and importers (Source: The Star).
In 2006, the Singapore Business Times carried a report, reproduced on Kit Siang’s blog:
Since Aug 1, a little known private Malaysian company named Lembah Sari has taken over a lucrative RM70-100 million-a-year (S$30-43 million) concession to security-label packaging for locally made cigarettes, sparking questions over how concessions are awarded in Malaysian business circles.
In September 2003, little known Kod Efisien was awarded a government concession to security-label all locally produced cigarettes and beer in an unpublicised decision by Malaysia’s Customs Department, a unit of the Finance Ministry.
Kod Efisien reached an agreement with the cigarette makers in March, 2004 but could never broker an agreement with Malaysia’s beer makers in a dispute that still continues. If a deal had been reached with the brewers, the company could have added another RM30 million to its annual cash flows.
In mid-July, industry executives said that cigarette companies received a letter from Lembah Sari’s chairman Haris Onn Hussein informing them that it was taking over the security labelling facilities provided by Kod Efisien for a three-year period.
At around the same time, the executives said that the Confederation of Malaysian Tobacco Manufacturers had been informed by Kod Efisien that its services would be replaced by Lembah Sari from August. No reasons were given for the change.
According to documents lodged with Malaysia’s Companies Commission, Lembah Sari is a RM2 company – it may have increased its capital to its authorised RM100,000 by now – with two little-known shareholders. Its chairman, Mr Haris, however, is the youngest son of Hussein Onn, Malaysia’s third premier, and a brother of Hishamuddin Hussein, the country’s Education Minister.
The unpublicised rotation of the award raises questions about how concession awards are given out in Malaysia, the executives said. Indeed, it used to be one of the chief complaints against the previous administration of Mahathir Mohamad: that a lack of public disclosure regarding contract awards resulted in an opaque process without open, competitive bidding or public debate. Meanwhile, the current premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had promised competitive bidding in government awards.
Moreover, the shift of companies seems to negate arguments that Malaysian companies which promised state-of-the-art security features were passing on unique technological benefits to its customers. In this case, for example, the executives said that Lembah Sari will continue to supply the same security equipment and ink supplied by Kod Efisien – from the Swiss-owned Sicpa Holdings SA.
In effect, the executives said, it was, like Kod Efisien before it, acting as a middleman in a process that usually resulted in price increases for consumers.
Haris is also an independent non-executive director of Shangri-la Hotels Malaysia Bhd.
Dato’ Haris Onn bin Hussein was appointed to the Board on 17 October 2006. He graduated from Cambridge University, United Kingdom, with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics. He started his working career with Touche Ross & Co, London, an accounting firm, in 1989. In 1992, he returned to Malaysia to work with DCB Sakura Merchant Bankers Berhad and he subsequently joined Rohas Sdn Bhd as General Manager from 1993 to 1995.
He was an executive director of Bell & Order Berhad (now known as Scomi Engineering Berhad) from 1996 to 2003…
(Source: Shangri-la Hotels (Malaysia) Bhd Annual Report 2010)
He seems to be doing rather well…