KUALA LUMPUR: The 100-storey building under the Warisan Merdeka mega project will have a multiplier effect on the economy and generate business opportunities for all races, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
“This project is not a waste,” he added.
The Prime Minister said the project was not government-initiated but was planned and proposed by Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB).
He added the construction work on the project would generate many economic activities.
“The area will also be a business centre for both the bumiputra and the non-bumiputra alike. It can be one of Malaysia’s attraction that will generate and bring profit.
The Prime Minister was asked to comment on concerns raised by many quarters against the decision to construct the 100-storey building.
Najib said when former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had wanted to build the Penang Bridge, the decision drew criticism, but it was the people of Penang wanting a second bridge now.
“The same happened when we wanted to build the (Petronas) Twin Towers. The decision was also questioned.
“Our rationale for wanting the 100-storey building is the same. We want to have a building that will reflect Malaysia as a modern and developed nation,” said the Prime Minister at a press conference after a closed-door session with Umno delegates attending the party’s annual general assembly.
The RM5bil Warisan Merdeka is an integrated development project comprising 100-storey tower - the tallest in Malaysia; as well as retaining Stadium Merdeka and Stadium Negara as national heritage.
Najib stressed the Government did not instruct PNB to construct Warisan Merdeka and that it was the company’s board of directors that had wanted to embark on the project.
Separately, five opposition MPs on Tuesday staged a protest against the 100-storey building.
DAP party veterans led by Bukit Bintang MP Fung Kui Lun arrived just after 9am at the foot of Chin Woo Stadium along Jalan Hang Jebat, before leading reporters up the hill along Jalan Changkat Stadium to the proposed site.
The others were Cheras MP Tan Kok Wai, also party national organising secretary; Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng, Seputih MP Teresa Kok as well as Kepong MP and party national deputy chairman Dr Tan Seng Giaw.
Fung asked the Government to reconsider the planned project, saying it would cause a negative impact to the surrounding area, such as creating a massive traffic jam.