Hannah Yeoh Slams ‘Imaginary’ RM150M Taman Rimba Kiara Park Compensation

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Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh has challenged a figure of RM150 million quoted as compensation that might be required to stop a proposed housing scheme at Taman Rimba Kiara park, which adjoins Taman Tun Dr Ismail.

“This alleged ‘RM150 million compensation’ is an imaginary figure and needs to be supported by receipts or proof of payment for the alleged transactions,” said Yeoh in a statement on Sunday (Mar 24).

The amount was mentioned on Sunday by the Federal Territories Minister, Khalid Samad, who said the Cabinet would be asked to decide whether the controversial project should be carried out.

The project is to be undertaken by Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan. Eight tower blocks, between 42-54 storeys each, of serviced apartments are to be built, as well as 350 flats in a 28-storey block to house displaced families now living in TTDI longhouse quarters.

Khalid said the proposed project could be scaled down from the originally proposed size of 4.9 hectares to 3.2 hectares, but Yeoh was adamant that the “scaling down of the proposed development must not go beyond the current longhouse footprint”.

“That is, the entire Taman Rimba Kiara must not be touched for development,” she said.

Yeoh said the anti-corruption group Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) had highlighted a conflict of interest involving Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan. She believed the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) was looking into the issue.

“The FT Minister must not jump the gun in putting a mythical price tag for cancellation of the proposed development especially in light of the revelation made by C4,” Yeoh added.

Residents want Khalid to clarify his role

The Taman Tun Dr Ismail Residents Association also sought clarification. “Where is he (Khalid) getting the number (RM150 million) from?” said the association’s coordinator, Leon Koay.

He said only site clearing works had been carried out and nothing else had taken place there. “Were there additional payments to Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan post-November 2017? If yes, how much? Is the money still with YWP?”

The residents want the minister to explain whether ‘refunds’ or ‘compensation’ is involved, the liability and respective involvements of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), the Federal Lands and Mines Department, Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan and the developer.

Koay also questioned if the government would be responsible for YWP’s liabilities. “Is YWP a GLC (government-linked company)? Is there a government gazette that designates YWP as coming under the responsibility of the FT Ministry?”

He said there was a possible conflict of interest in the minister being chairman of the foundation and the KL mayor being a member of its board.

“The fact that the minister spends so much time defending and taking the side of Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan in disputes against tax-paying residents and voters in Kuala Lumpur is already evidence in itself of the inherent conflict of interest,” Koay said.

Chan Choy May

“It is disappointing indeed to observe the minister repeating Tengku Adnan-style statements in relation to Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan,” he added, making reference to Tengku Adnan Mansor, the FT minister in the former government. – FMT