Land rental not paid because Mara subsidiary failed to produce title, taxi firm claims

Datuk Shamsubahrin Ismail says he did not pay the agreed rental of RM850 a day for the land on Jalan Kia Peng because the subsidiary, DDEC, had allegedly failed to produce a land title. ― Picture by Siow Saw Feng
Datuk Shamsubahrin Ismail says he did not pay the agreed rental of RM850 a day for the land on Jalan Kia Peng because the subsidiary, DDEC, had allegedly failed to produce a land title. ― Picture by Siow Saw Feng

KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 ― A taxi company today admitted to not paying nearly RM200,000 in rental fees for a piece of land it had leased for several months from a subsidiary of Majlis Amanah Rakyat (Mara).

Big Blue Taxi Facilities Sdn Bhd advisor Datuk Shamsubahrin Ismail claimed, however, that he did not pay the agreed rental of RM850 a day for the 1.2ha land on Jalan Kia Peng because the subsidiary, Design Development Centre (M) Sdn Bhd (DDEC), had allegedly failed to produce a land title.

“In October 2010, the chief executive officer of DDEC told me that the piece of land was theirs when I wanted to use that area to build a taxi hub.

“The company then issued the offer letter in November 3 that year, but when DBKL (KL City Hall) issued a stop order that same month saying that the place was private land, an officer from DDEC then said it (the land) was not theirs and that they were in the midst of obtaining the land title,” he told a news conference.

When asked why he continued operations on the land despite knowing that it was against the law, Shamsubahrin claimed he was told to do so by an officer from DDEC.

“On the same day when DBKL asked me to stop work, she (a DDEC officer) told me to go ahead with my construction works and use the land, promising me that they will obtain the land title and show it to me,” he claimed.

He added that despite the promise, he never received the land title.

Shamsubahrin told reporters that he operated on the land between November 2010 and June 2011 without paying rental, saying that he had intended to begin payments only after obtaining the land title.

“Instead of receiving the land title, we were suddenly locked out the place in June, 2011 and about 20 taxis of mine were inside,” he said, adding that he also spent almost RM170,000 on renovation works.

Now, he claimed the land was being leased to his competitor.

On December 21, last year, Shamsubahrin's taxi company filed a lawsuit against DDEC for cheating the company when it claimed that a piece of land here belonged to it.

The taxi firm is seeking RM27 million in alleged losses and RM50 million for alleged defamation of reputation.

It was reported that DDEC then countersued the taxi firm on January 22, seeking RM166,500 in payment for daily rental of the land for the said period.

A news report in The Star yesterday said that DDEC, in its statement of defence, said that the Federal Land Commissioner in June 13, 2011, had agreed for the land to be leased to Mara for 99 years with a payment of RM1,090 annually to be made by DDEC.

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