Kelantan demands RM1bil in oil royalties from govt


Reports by MARTIN CARVALHO, HEMANANTHANI SIVANANDAM, RAHIMY RAHIM and TARRENCE TAN

KELANTAN is demanding an oil royalty to the tune of RM1bil from the Federal Government instead of what was recently given.

PAS deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said the Federal Government should just pay up and not make confusing statements.

“PAS MPs are disappointed over a recent statement on the issue and demanded that the Finance Minister make full payment on the oil royalty which averages about RM1bil a year, ” he said at the Parliament lobby yesterday.

The Kubang Kerian MP said there was no point categorising Kelantan as a poor state when royalty payment, which could be used to alleviate poverty, was blocked.

He added that PAS also wanted Lim Guan Eng to disclose in Parliament the amount of oil extracted by Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) from oil fields in Kelantan.

On Tuesday, Kelantan Mentri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob denied Lim’s statement on the issue, saying the recent RM15.7mil received by the state government was goodwill money and not oil royalty payment.

Lim defended his statement saying that he did not want to argue over the terminology used with regard to the payments.

Pengkalan Chepa MP Ahmad Marzuki Shaary said there had been no official answer as to how much oil had been extracted from Kelantan.

However, he said based on calculations provided by some quarters, the amount of oil royalty payable to Kelantan should be about RM1bil annually.

PAS secretary-general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan meanwhile said the recent issue over oil royalty payment to Kelantan could lead to another legal challenge.

In 2010, the Kelantan government filed a suit naming Petronas as the defendant, alleging that the company had violated the royalty payment contract over petroleum revenue.

However, the suit was withdrawn in May this year after an out of court settlement was reached between the parties.

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