Letter of demand later sent to Muda for a public apology within 48 hours for alleged public slander.
A press conference questioning the status of a still-unfinished construction project with ties to the family of Prasarana Malaysia Bhd chairman Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman was halted midway, when his son came to answer some queries himself.
Dr Faizal Tajuddin surprised both the media and the youth movement, Malaysian United Democratic Alliance (Muda), when he came unannounced to the press conference at the Dang Wangi LRT station.
“I came here to defend the dignity of my family. If Muda wants to have a meeting with my father so that they can get their questions answered, I will call him to make it happen,” he said calmly.
He explained that the reason the project was still unfinished was because it was privately funded, and that funds to finish the building were dependent on the investors.
He also disputed Muda’s claim that the project involved government funds, saying that all payments were fully borne by the company.
Faizal Tajuddin, who is also Pasir Salak Umno deputy chief, said his family has not received a single penny from the government after Muda pointed out the alleged conflict of interest in the award of compensation money to a company led by Tajuddin’s family members.
“We won the contract because at the time the government wanted to promote the land. They did an open tender and wanted it to be a joint developer project.
“We offered RM220 million while the market rate was RM180 million,” Faizal told reporters.
“If Muda wants, I will arrange a meeting with my father and they can hash it out. Doing it this way is just sensationalising it,” he added.
During the event, Muda called for answers from the Prasana chairman regarding the construction project near the Dang Wangi LRT station that was awarded to a consortium with ties to his family members.
“The consortium includes Detik Utuh Sdn Bhd, which, as we know, is owned by members of his (Tajuddin’s) family via Tindakan Juara Sdn Bhd,” said Muda co-founder Amir Hadi.
“You can see that work on this site remains unfinished despite it being eight years since construction started.
“Now, Prasarana is studying to terminate the project and penalties will have to be paid up to RM87.7 million,” he added.
Amir also alleged that a new headquarters was being proposed to be built over the unfinished site, despite another one coming up in Subang, Selangor.
On March 29, 2012, the government appointed Intan Sekitar Sdn Bhd a consortium between Crest Builders Sdn Bhd, who owned 51 percent, and Detik Utuh Sdn Bhd who owned 49 percent.
Detik Utuh is owned by Tajuddin’s family through another company Tindakan Juara Sdn Bhd.
Amir pointed out that Tajuddin became Prasarana chairman on May 1, 2020, but checks on the construction progress showed it was only 15 percent finished by September 30, 2020, eight years after it was proposed on March 29, 2012.
Then on October 8, 2020, Prasarana decided to terminate the contract and compensate the company to the tune of RM87.7 million.
“We have proof that Tajuddin was chairing this meeting. How can he do that when they were deciding what amount to pay to them?” he asked.
Muda said it had been approached by “several individuals” who provided documents, including minutes of the meeting in question.
“Not only that, we’re hearing that he wants another RM470 million to build a new Prasarana office here. Thing is there is already a RM150 million Prasarana office at Subang Depot, so why do we need another one?” Amir added.
The party said it is sharing the documents with the public through a website it set up called “Skandal Tajuddin”.
Taking the microphone at the press conference, Faizal questioned why Muda did not lodge a police report if the party was convinced that there was an abuse of power over the issue.
“The (website’s) name itself, ‘Tajuddin’s Scandal’ is malicious,” he claimed.
Yesterday, Tajuddin told a press conference that the development project linked to his family was granted before he was appointed Prasarana chairperson or was in government.
He said the Latitud 8 project in Dang Wangi, Kuala Lumpur, was awarded to a firm linked to his family in 2012 through an open tender.
He also said that due to lack of funds, Prasarana could not finish the Dang Wangi project and he has asked the federal government for an injection of cash.
Later, Muda said it had been served with a letter of demand from Tajuddin.
In it, the Umno MP demanded Muda apologise publicly within 48 hours for allegedly slandering him in public or to face action, following the party’s press conference to highlight alleged discrepancies within the government-linked public transport company.
“We have received a letter from the lawyers. I repeat, the main thing we want is an explanation as Prasarana are responsible for 1.5 million users.
“The company belongs to the government. If our accusations are wrong, we are ready to go to court,” Amir said on Twitter, with the letter attached.
Amir also said Muda will lodge a report with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission over the matter soon.