Article in Selangor Times - Big guns get cheap landWriter: Gan Pei Ling
Published: Fri, 08 Feb 2013
SUBANG JAYA: An Umno veteran politician said he was an “ordinary citizen” when he bought a piece of 5,000 sq ft state land for only RM2 per sq ft at USJ3 in 2001.
Gobind, Ng, Yeoh and Nik Nazmi in front of USJ3 bungalows.
The BN politicians have sold the land now worth RM170 per
Tan Sri Megat Najmuddin Megat Khas, who also sits on the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) advisory board, told Selangor Times he did purchase the land.
“Was the land alienation illegal? I paid for it. A great many others have been given land, including many government servants, Felda settlers, Chinese new villagers etc. So what is so wrong? In 2001 I was an ordinary citizen,” said the former politician in a text message.
The Umno disciplinary committee member and former Subang division chief was responding to Pakatan Rakyat (PR) lawmakers’ latest revelation that Barisan Nasional (BN) politicians had bought prime land at USJ3 at rock bottom prices, and later sold the properties at market price for profit.
Former Subang Jaya municipal councillors Lee You Hin and Yap Yun Fatt of MCA, who were also implicated, had declined to comment.
Selangor Times was unable to reach two others – former state executive councillor Datin Paduka Seripah Noli and Kelana Jaya MCA deputy chairperson Lim Kok Sai at press time.
Subang Jaya assemblyperson Hannah Yeoh took the BN politicians to task on Wednesday for obtaining public land at abnormally low prices for private gain.
State documents showed that former Selangor Menteri Besar Dr Mohamad Khir Toyo’s administration had approved the sale of 99 plots of land in USJ3, each around 5,000 sq ft, for between RM8,000 to RM19,000 on Feb 20, 2001.
This is on top of the 24 plots of land totalling 33.5 acres alienated to BN component parties for only RM1 per sq ft exposed by Yeoh’s DAP colleague Sekinchan assemblyperson Ng Suee Lim last November.
Yeoh is unsure of USJ3 property prices in 2001 but told reporters the land is now worth around RM170 per sq ft – meaning a 5,000 sq ft plot can be sold for nearly a million.
All five politicians have since sold their land at the now affluent neighbourhood of USJ3B and USJ3D.
Ng, Seri Setia assemblyperson Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad and Puchong member of Parliament Gobind Singh Deo said the public should press BN politicians for an explanation in the upcoming polls.
Selangor BN lawmakers had previously claimed that their parties were given land at discounted prices to build public amenities like kindergartens and community halls.
But PR legislators later disclosed that the lands have been sold to build condominiums, shoplots and bungalows.
Human rights lawyer Edmund Bon said the MACC and the police should probe into the land sales for possible abuse of power or conflict of interest.