PETALING JAYA: The Penang state government is being "consistently inconsistent" in defending its controversial undersea tunnel and three paired roads project, said Datuk Eric See-To (pic).
In a statement on Thursday (Feb 15), the Barisan Nasional strategic communications deputy director gave three examples to substantiate his claims.
He first referred to Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng’s statement that 110 acres of land was not transferred to Zenith Consortium, nor was there any approval issued for high-density luxury condominiums.
“Yes, 110 acres (which would have been worth RM6.34bil) were not transferred yet but what Lim failed to mention is that 5.67 acres was already transferred.
“Of these, 3.7 acres were indeed approved for high-density luxury condominiums for the City of Dreams project,” he said.
In his second example, See-To said both Lim and his second deputy, P. Ramasamy had claimed the latter was not directly involved in the project and therefore should not have been investigated by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
However, See-To said Ramasamy had issued multiple statements to defend the project, all between Jan 25 and Feb 13.
“Ramasamy also claimed that Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai is trying to sabotage the project because Liow was late in replying a letter from Ramasamy asking to acquire land for the project.
“And yet, he and Lim dare to claim that Ramasamy is not involved in the project at all?” he said.
See-To’s third example was in reference to the state government’s claim that the Transport Ministry had refused to release land for the three paired roads.
He claimed Ramasamy had said the piece of land required in Jelutong was owned by the ministry and it had refused to budge, but that the state had already received conditional approval for environmental impact assessment (EIA) on Nov 7 last year.
“Ramasamy himself said that he wrote to the Transport Minister on Dec 15 last year and received a reply on Feb 5 to set up a meeting.
“Is a reply that took two months considered as the ministry trying to sabotage the project?” he said.
The controversial 7.2km undersea tunnel, which was awarded to Consortium Zenith, was proposed to connect Gurney Drive on the island to Bagan Ajam in Butterworth as part of the Penang Transport Master Plan to ease traffic congestion in the state.
Did you find this article insightful?