Saturday, October 23, 2021

Revealed: Khalid’s personal touch in helping developer’s bid for KL land

The former FT minister backed a private developer's application to overturn a decision to revoke approval for the transfer of a plot of land in the capital city at least twice.

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Former minister Khalid Samad personally threw his weight at least twice behind a private developer’s application to overturn a decision by the federal territories land office to revoke approval for the transfer of a plot of land in Kuala Lumpur, MalaysiaNow can reveal.

The Amanah leader who was the federal territories minister under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government not only instructed his political secretary to follow up on the request by Saujana Beringin Sdn Bhd, but also urged the Kuala Lumpur mayor about a year later to approve the transfer of some 26 acres of land for the purpose of mixed development.

MalaysiaNow is publishing images of the letters with Khalid’s handwritten note and initials, following his statement yesterday questioning a report last Friday.

The Shah Alam MP had also refused to address the matter, saying he needed more details on the claim by MalaysiaNow while launching an attack on the portal.

Khalid Samad’s handwritten note telling his aide to follow up on a letter from Saujana Beringin Sdn Bhd, seeking to overturn a decision to revoke a transfer of land in Kuala Lumpur.

One of the images shows a reply by Khalid’s political secretary to the company using the letterhead of the minister’s office.

In it, Azli Yusof informed the company that Khalid had referred its request to the Kuala Lumpur City Hall and the Federal Territories Lands and Mines Office, adding that his boss had no objection to the company’s bid to overturn a prior decision to revoke the land transfer.

Checks by MalaysiaNow have also revealed several familiar names in a web of ownership linking them to Saujana Beringin.

They include a younger sibling of a former prime minister, whose company holds a controlling stake in another company that holds a 100% stake in Saujana Beringin.

A letter from Khalid Samad’s political secretary Azli Yusof informing Saujana Beringin that its application was favourable to his boss, and that it was being referred to the land office which had revoked the transfer of a plot of land in Kuala Lumpur.

The senior Amanah source who revealed the matter to MalaysiaNow said it was not the only instance of top officials under the PH government violating the coalition’s own rule banning any act that could be seen as flexing ministerial muscle.

This included issuing support letters as well as giving instructions that could be seen as influencing decisions.

“The only thing that is permissible is the use of the words ‘for consideration’ or ‘please look into the matter’,” Khalid’s former Cabinet colleague from DAP, Anthony Loke Siew Fook had said last year.

In May last year, Khalid’s aide Azli, who was also the Shah Alam Amanah division chief, was arrested and investigated over a complaint by an architectural firm that it was given a fake development order.

Khalid claimed then that Azli had fallen victim to a broker who had misused his aide’s name and made millions.

Azli was later released on police bail.

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