MRT Co backs down from land row

By Melissa Chi | October 13, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — MRT Corporation CEO Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid pledged today Jalan Sultan properties will not be acquired for the Klang Valley Mass Rapit Transit project, as long as businesses and landowners vacate their premises temporarily during tunnel construction.
“We are not touching your property, we are not going to take over your property, I don’t understand why realignment becomes an issue.

“I would acknowledge to you today that the biggest challenge would be in Bukit Bintang area because the area is so tight that we cannot get to the underground tunnel done without demolishing buildings at the top,” he said today.

The newly appointed chief of the MRT project owner said Jalan Sultan traders would be compensated for six months loss of income, of which the value would be determined by an independent third party firm, and to put them up at another location if necessary.

He also promised to put construction on hold during the Chinese New Year celebration, and guaranteed that the traders could resume business as usual at the end of the six month period.

Azhar said the Jalan Sultan and Jalan Bukit Bintang traders and shop owners were supposed get back to him on whether they had reached a mutual decision yesterday, but they had decided to have a press conference Instead.

The traders — backed by former MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat and DAP’s Bukit Bintang MP Fong Kui Lun — threatened to raise their grouses directly with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak if their demands are not met.

The ad hoc committees encompassing traders from both streets have also banded together to form the “Committee of preserving Jalan Sultan and Jalan Bukit Bintang”, a special joint taskforce aimed at pressuring the government into considering a realignment to the MRT’s Sungai Buloh-Kajang line.


  1. #1 by yhsiew on Thursday, 13 October 2011 - 8:41 pm

    It was people power that made MRT Co. back down from land row.

  2. #2 by HJ Angus on Thursday, 13 October 2011 - 9:05 pm

    done away with Captchas?

  3. #3 by davidliu on Thursday, 13 October 2011 - 9:58 pm

    3 most important rules in retail business.


    Create something ( location ) out of nothing. Creating a underground commercial area under the prime location that “someone” can not buy at current market price by the name of MRT. Who will be the biggest winner. What a brilliant idea, CRONY rule

  4. #4 by monsterball on Thursday, 13 October 2011 - 10:19 pm

    The Budget did no fool even civil servants.,,,,,,,,because they are told…all the good news starts from end of Dec.
    You think they dare to offend People and to loose more votes?
    Mahathir told Najib to delay the 13th GE as long as he can to enjoy his one term PMship.
    Does this not show Najib has no power to do anything?

  5. #5 by sightseeing on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 12:49 am

    //We are not touching your property, we are not going to take over your property//

    Demand to have the pledge in writing. The government is not bound by the pledge from CEO Datuk Azhar Abdul Hamid, he can be fired anytime.

  6. #6 by monsterball on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 3:27 am

    If they are not taking over Chinese properties…how come UDA owns so much at Sultan Street?
    It’s a price you cannot refused….if you don’t want to sell….you have to follow the majority to sell.

  7. #7 by yhsiew on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 7:13 am

    MRT Co has to give way, otherwise BN will fare badly in the 13th GE in areas covered by the MRT.

  8. #8 by HJ Angus on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 7:21 am

    yhsiew :
    MRT Co has to give way, otherwise BN will fare badly in the 13th GE in areas covered by the MRT.

    The damage has already been done. Without a master-plan on the public transport system to include an integrated bus system, the KVMRT is going to FAIL big time.
    I doubt KL voters will fall in love in this project that was not properly conceptualised (even for the land grab attempt!)

  9. #9 by dagen on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 8:49 am

    It is actually obvious that the umno gobermen must back away from such a sensitive and potentially disastrous (to its winning chances in GE13) move.

    Of course umno could not move fast enough. Remember umno is a dinonaur. Apart from a huge body, it also has a remarkably small head and needless to say a mere couple kg of gray matter. In effect umno moves very much like an sorely underpowered car with a big body.

    But there is another factor. The crony factor. You see, there are cronyies and there are also cronyies of cronyies; and that connection goes on and on. The cronyies are no longer a mere few well positioned greedy idiots. Instead they have grown into a complicated web of vasted interest. So naturally the umno mega project distribution formula that has evolved to provide for their interests must equally be complicated. It takes massive effort and hell lot of time to work that formula out.

    The mrt project has unfortunately been fed into that formula waaaaaay before jibby jib announced it formally to the public. By then crony interests have all been worked out nicely. Of course the protests could do nothing to change the cronyies’ interest and umno’s stand. Arrogance is one thing, upsetting the finely balanced crony interest is another issue. But unfortunately for umno, GE13 is near. Unfortunately for umno, again, the BN co-operation formula is at stake because pressing ahead arrogantly means hastening the demise of mca (now in icu).

    Reluctuant though umno and the cronyies are, the great distribution formula must be reworked. It is a slow process. Rounds and rounds of negotiations to follow rounds and rounds of negotiations.

    So there you are and clearly we can do without the complicated formula. Vote umno out.

    ABU people!

  10. #10 by boh-liao on Friday, 14 October 2011 - 9:29 am

    “… in Bukit Bintang area because the area is so tight that we cannot get to the underground tunnel done WITHOUT demolishing buildings at the top”
    APA ITU? What kind of rubbish n incompetent talk is dis?
    Y Sg can build MRT lines, like d just completed Circle Line, underground without demolishing buildings at d top?
    In fact, a whole new interconnected prime commercial underground space is created – look at Sg, Tokyo, Osaka, London, etc

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