KUALA LUMPUR: Shabudin Yahaya (BN-Tasek Gelugor) wants the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry to launch investigations into the sale of land by Lim Guan Eng in Penang.
According to Shabudin, the Penang chief minister, who is also DAP secretary-general, was allegedly either “directly or indirectly involved” in the sale of two plots of land in Taman Manggis, Penang, to a developer for the construction of a private dental clinic and a hotel.
The land was originally earmarked for low-cost housing, with units to be rented out to the hardcore poor for RM100 per month.
The Barisan Nasional lawmaker further alleged the company the land was sold to was owned by the same man with connections to a piece of private property in George Town that Lim rented and later purchased at a below-the-market price.
Shabudin said the property was purchased by Lim on Oct 15 last year and that it was previously owned by a Phang Li Kun, who rented the property to the CM for seven years for RM5,000 a month.
He further alleged the house was initially valued at RM2.5 million in 2008 and had gone through extensive renovations amounting to “hundreds of thousands of ringgit”, but was sold to Lim for only RM2.8 million later.
“This does not realistically reflect the rise in property value.”
Shabudin’s accusation drew anger from Opposition MPs who dismissed the allegations and said the matter should be raised at the Penang State Assembly instead of in Parliament.
They also questioned why Shabudin had raised the matter when Lim was not present in Parliament himself.
Deputy Speaker Ismail Mohamed Said, however, refused to entertain their protests, saying he had allowed the Opposition to make accusations against the Prime Minister when Najib Razak was not in Parliament.
Noh Omar (BN-Tanjung Karang) then leapt to Shabudin’s defence, claiming the controversy surrounding the purchase of a house sold at below-market price by former Selangor Menteri Besar Khir Toyo in 2007 had also been raised in the Dewan Rakyat without issue.
Khir was subsequently convicted by the Shah Alam High Court in 2011 for abusing his position as menteri besar and Selangor State Development Corporation (PKNS) chairperson to obtain land and property below the market price.
Lim, meanwhile, rubbished Shabudin’s allegations, stating the house was 30 years old and was an ordinary bungalow lot, Malaysiakini reported.
“It is not a mansion and has no swimming pool,” the news portal quoted Lim as saying, adding he would respond to the matter at a press conference tomorrow.
Outside Dewan Rakyat, Shabudin alleged the land was valued at over RM22 million, but was sold to Kuala Lumpur International Dental Centre (KLIDC) for merely half the price.
“This is despite it going through an an open tender.”
He also alleged that the house Lim had purchased, was previously owned by Phang.
Phang, Shabudin claimed, had a 20 per cent share in Windbond Management, a company whose major shareholder is Tang Yong Chew.
He alleged that Tang, on the other hand, held a 60 per cent share in KLIDC.