Archive for category Land

Selling Reclaimed Johor Land is Good for the Economy

Koon Yew Yin
19th January 2017

A few months before the end of last year, I wrote on the state of the economy in an article chiefly directed at market investors and the business community. In my article I touched on the Chinese investment wave and noted that this was a most important partnership emerging between Malaysia and China which would boost our nation’s economic fortunes. I followed up this with another on “The China X Factor in Malaysia’s Future”

In my second article, I noted that the Chinese are investing here for their own benefit and not out of charity. I wrote:

Let’s make no mistake. This is not about PM Najib’s, Malaysia’s or Malaysian Chinese’s interests that China is making these deals. China will be the X factor in Malaysia’s development in any transformation programme for our nation. If we want to make it a win-win deal, we have to work to pursue our national advantage.

I had also written

The most important thing we can learn from the Chinese example, is that we have to free the creative enterprise and spirit of the people, especially the young.

No freebies – just hard work, a no-nonsense, fair and competent government, and incorruptibility which was high on the governance agenda, has made China the power to respect throughout the world and in Malaysia.

But there is also a lot wrong in China now that mainland Chinese are trying to eradicate. Let us learn from that too.

I had hoped that our leaders would take my advice in the right spirit. Read the rest of this entry »

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9-day Countdown to 13GE – Pakatan Rakyat promises Accountable and Transparent, Sustainable and People-Friendly and Equitable Development for the people of Johor if voted in as the Federal as well as State government

Yesterday, I gave three reasons why Johoreans will vote in record numbers for Pakatan Rakyat in the upcoming 13th general elections. Today, I give three reasons why Johoreans need to vote in a Pakatan government not just at the federal level but also at the state level as well.

Firstly, Johoreans must vote in a Pakatan federal and state government to ensure that Accountable and Transparent Development takes place in the state of Johor.

Southern Johor is the site of three mega projects that are in various stages of development namely, the Khazanah owned Iskandar Development Region (IDR) outside Johor Bahru, the Petronas owned Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (RAPID) project in Pengerang and the Benalec owned Tanjung Piai Maritime Industrial Park project in Tanjung Piai.

Billions of ringgit have already been poured into Iskandar and billions more of are expected to be poured into the other two mega projects.

These projects require the approval of not just the federal government but also the state government especially when it comes to land acquisition, reclamation and development.

Without the presence of a Pakatan government at the State as well as Federal government, the people of Johor will suffer the same fate as the people in Penang and Selangor before the 2008 general election.

In other words, land will be sold at below market prices to politically connected parties without any benefit to the average Johorean. Read the rest of this entry »


Sarawak’s shame

by P Gunasegaram
3:05PM Mar 22, 2013

QUESTION TIME It is a common thing in Malaysia for many politicians to live way beyond their means. And although there are ways and means to check anyone’s wealth simply by tracking down their assets, these people live in relative peace being troubled neither by the police nor by their conscience.

The anecdotal evidence has been there that corruption is a great problem, especially grand corruption of which virtually nothing has been done. And this has been greatest in Sabah and Sarawak where those in power live with fabulous riches and are associated with other rich, but often infamous people.

Even for someone who expects that all these corruptions routinely take place, the recent graphic revelations about Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud’s family members and the ease with which NGO Global Witness was able to obtain video recordings damning them was shocking to me.

If you have not seen the video yet, go here to look at it. It is a case of such blatant complacency, arrogance and cockiness showing that the perpetrators were super confident that they could get away with such things. Read the rest of this entry »


Land Grab Malaysian-Style

By Thomas Fann

This is not a new issue, in fact it is 21 years old.

It all began when the Barisan Nasional government, with its overwhelming majority in Parliament, passed by 99 to 25 votes the 1991 Land Acquisition Amendment Bill, or Act A804. The rephrasing of sections of the Land Acquisition Act 1960 basically gave incontestable power to state governments to seize private land for development by private companies and individuals. Lands originally acquired for public purposes can also be used for private development.

Before Act A804, land could only be acquired for public purposes or for public utilities like building of roads, schools, hospitals, pipelines, water or power plants, etc. With the addition of “..for any purpose which in the opinion of the State Authority is beneficial to the economic development of Malaysia”, no land is safe.

The term “beneficial to the economic development of Malaysia” is as subjective as you can get. A piece of land can be acquired to build a posh five-star hotel, an amusement park or a golf resort because in the opinion of the government it would bring in the tourist dollar and create jobs for locals, not to mention enriching the private companies who would, of course, be paying taxes.

To really make the Land Acquisition Act water-tight for the acquirer, Section 68A says that acquisitions cannot be invalidated by reason of any kind of subsequent disposal or use (etc) of the acquired land. This new provision aims at preventing the bona fide of the acquirer or of the purported purpose from being challenged in court. You can only challenge the quantum of the compensation offered, the measurement of the land area, the person whom compensation is payable to, and the apportionment of the compensation.

The leader of the opposition then, YB Lim Kit Siang in opposing Act A804, gave this dire warning – “When it becomes law, it will destroy the constitutional right to property enjoyed by Malaysians for 34 years since Merdeka, and become the mother of all corruption, abuses of power, conflicts-of-interest and unethical malpractices in Malaysia…”

Was Kit Siang just over-reacting or scare-mongering when he said that or is it a prophecy that was and is being fulfilled till today? Read the rest of this entry »