Agenda Daily

BNSC questions Penang govt land sale

The Barisan Nasional Strategic Communications (BNSC) team is questioning if the Penang government prioritises the sale of state-owned land to private developers.

In the statement today, deputy BNSC director Eric See-To referred to two land sales made by the DAP-led government in 2015 and 2016, even though the Detailed Environmental Impact Assessment (DEIA) report had yet to be approved.

“The Penang Government must now answer why they have allowed this RM3bil sale of state land two-and-a-half years ago and then collected payments, even though none of the projects have yet to get final approval.

“The feasibility studies and detailed design for the tunnel is not complete while the roads are only scheduled to start construction in the middle of next year,” he said.

See-To said that the state government had allowed the tunnel concession company to pre-sell almost RM3bil worth of state land to a public listed company and collect payment for it.

“In December 2015, the tunnel (Special Purpose Vehicle) SPV company sold a piece of 4.43-acre (1.79ha) freehold land belonging to the state government in Bandar Tanjong Pinang for RM162mil to a public listed company.

“On Jan 15,2016 the tunnel SPV company then pre-sold another 50 acres (20.23ha) of Penang State land at Bandar Tanjong Pinang for RM2.831bil to the same public listed company. It was witnessed by Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng,” he said.

He went on to ask if the Chief Minister’s presence at the signing event was an endorsement of the sale of state land.

On Saturday, the BNSC had asked the Penang government to show evidence that it did not break procurement guidelines when it awarded the proposed undersea tunnel project to an “undercapitalised” company.

See-To had said that the Penang Tunnel SPV company which was awarded the project was a relatively new company with low cash balances and paid-up capital in relation to the mega project, The Star reported.

On June 14, Lim denied BNSC’s allegations that Penang was being burdened by an increasing number of debts and was set to become a bankrupt and failed state.

Lim has thus far not specifically responded to claims about the tunnel and the SPV company assigned to it.-19/7/2017

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