Yeo to MCA: PJ land to be used for public services – really?

Damansara Utama assemblyperson Yeo Bee Yin says if the land in SS25 is to be used for public services, MCA should return it to the state government.


PETALING JAYA: DAP’s Yeo Bee Yin has continued to slam MCA over its purchase of land in SS25 allegedly below market price, questioning the party’s claim that the plot will be used for public service.

Asking what guarantee MCA could give that the piece of land would be used for that purpose, Yeo said if the Barisan Nasional (BN) component party really intended the plot for public services, there was no need for it to own the land.

“In fact, if it is for public services, the land should be owned by the state government,” the Damansara Utama assemblyperson said in a statement today.

She also asked why MCA was applying for the land to be rezoned and converted from a “water body” to a commercial plot.

“If MCA is indeed sincere about ‘public services’, it should return the land to the state government. Or if it still wants to keep the land, then it should pay market rates for the land.”

Otherwise, she said, the party was only abusing state assets and pretending to offer public services.

On Sept 14, DAP said Selangor MCA had purchased a one-acre plot of land in 2008 for RM1 per square foot (psf) when it was worth RM400 psf.

Yeo and Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua said such a price was normally reserved for religious institutions wishing to build places of worship.

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However, MCA hit back at the claims, with its vice-president Chew Mei Fun saying there was nothing wrong with the transaction which had been done legally.

“MCA is providing services to the public,” she had said.

Chew also accused Pua of purposely dragging her into the matter, saying he had failed to do his homework as MPs did not sit in at district-level land committee meetings which decide on land matters.

PJ Utara MCA chairman Tan Gim Tuan meanwhile said Pua should clarify on what basis he claimed the land was valued at RM400 psf.

On Sept 19, Chew said she had instructed her lawyers to issue a letter of demand to Yeo for an apology. She also requested that Yeo remove a video from her Facebook page featuring comments by Yeo and Pua on the land deal.

In her statement today, Yeo said she was fully prepared to face any defamation suit by Chew in court, adding that she wished to hear the former deputy minister’s explanation to the judge and members of the public on how the “land grab exercise” was not a betrayal of her voters.

“As the then MP for PJU, did Chew really think it was not wrong for MCA to grab the land that was supposed to belong to people in her own constituency?

“We want to ask the current MCA vice-president, is it ethical for any political party to do so?”

Yeo also pointed to another incident in 2012, in which she said MCA had acquired another piece of land, 641 square metres in size, for RM1 psf.

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The land, which was by the river in Kajang, was supposed to be used for the construction of a public hall, she said.

“However, instead of a public hall, they (MAC) built a four-storey building to house the MCA Hulu Langat Division offices.

“If Chew and other MCA leaders really think that such land grabs are not wrong, then we would like to challenge them to put such a view on their manifesto if they are contesting in the coming general election.

“We shall let the voters in those constituencies, who they seek to represent, decide if such perverted ethics are acceptable,” she said.

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Bahagian pelancongan nusantara merupakan salah satu seksyen yang penting dalam ekonomi Malaysia. Sehingga saat ini, sektor pelancongan merupakan sektor kelima terbesar negara selepas sektor perkhidmatan kewangan, kelapa sawit, borong dan runcit, gas dan tenaga, dan petroleum dengan menyumbang sebanyak RM36.9 bilion kepada Keluaran Negara Kasar (KNK).

Pun begitu pada peringkat awal selepas pasca kemerdekaan Malaysia, kerajaan tidak memberi penekanan terhadap sektor pelancongan. Kerajaan pada ketika itu lebih memberi tumpuan kepada pembangunan infrastruktur negara dan melawan ancaman komunis. Selain itu, penyebab ancaman dari luar seperti konfrantasi dengan Indonesia turut menjejaskan tujuan kerajaan pada ketika itu. Ia sekaligus melambatkan pekembangan sektor pelancongan di Malaysia.

Pada era tahun 60-an, sektor pelancongan masih belum mewujudkan peranan yang utama terhadap perkembangan ekonomi negara. Kerajaan pada waktu itu memberi tumpuan kepada sektor hasil bumi seperti bijih timah dan getah. Sektor hasil bumi tersebut telah menyumbang sebanyak 45% kepada keluaran Negara kasar (KNK) pada tahun 1970.