PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong has challenged Penang Deputy Chief Minister II Dr P. Ramasamy to get him a piece of land on Gurney Drive for RM475psf.
The MCA deputy president said that few people, including himself, believe the insistence by Dr Ramasamy that the cost of the land in Gurney Drive - used as payment for the Penang undersea tunnel project's Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) - is only worth RM475psf and that the state government should not be blamed for appreciation in land value.
In a ceremony on Jan 15 in 2016, Dr Wee pointed out that Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng himself witnessed a signing of a memorandum of agreement where the tunnel SPV sold 50 acres of the very land to a listed company for RM2.83bil – at a land price of RM1,300psf.
Dr Wee said that the land value for other developments nearby, such as the Marriott Residences, is much higher than RM475psf.
“Therefore, I would like to ask the Penang Deputy Chief Minister II to back up his words and tell me where I can buy prime seaside land on Gurney Drive for RM475psf,” he said in a statement Friday (March 23).
It is in response to Dr Ramasamy’s comment which appeared in an online portal on Sunday (March 18).
Dr Ramasamy had allegedly accused Dr Wee of not giving an objective analysis of the Penang undersea tunnel project.
Dr Wee said that if Dr Ramasamy could get the land for him, MCA would be willing to donate half of the profits to a charity that will benefit Malaysian education.
In his statement, Dr Wee also said he had explained in great detail how Penang people might stand to lose RM20bil if the project were to start.
This includes the actual project cost of RM6.34bil, RM3bil in toll collections, RM9bil in associated projects to support the tunnel SPV property project and RM2.2bil in loss of land value appreciation, he said.
“I invite all Malaysians, particularly the Penang people, to watch my video and see the proof for yourself how I had arrived at such a conclusion.
“Part of my explanation includes the Penang government’s strange act of signing a contract in 2013 which allows construction of the tunnel portion of the project, valued at RM3.6bil, to only start 10 years later in 2023.
“This will result in at least RM2.2bil in loss in land value appreciation for the Penang people,” he said.
Dr Wee said that taking a conservative 5% per year appreciation in land value, he had shown that the RM3.6bil would have increased to RM5.8bil in 10 years time in 2023.