KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 ― The Ministry of Defence (Mindef) allegedly lost some RM258 million by selling an airforce base at a discount to a company owned by tycoon Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary, The Edge Financial Daily reported today.
Quoting anonymous sources, the financial news daily said the land swap deal which was political in nature, involved Syed Mokhtar's company Kelana Ventures Sdn Bhd (KVSB) receiving a 34 per cent discount.
The land in question was the former Royal Malaysian Air Force base in Kinrara, Puchong, a 101.81-acre (41.2-ha) base.
Incorporated in 1992, KVSB offers real estate development and investment services and is based in Johor Baru.
Malay Mail is attempting to verify the report with KVSB and Mindef.
This comes as Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu’s special functions officer Mohd Nasaie Ismail filed an official complaint with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission yesterday over the exchange of two plots of land where the military have set up bases.
Nasaie had alleged political meddling during Barisan Nasional’s reign as the two land swap deals involves the development of the two military camps, which are in Paloh, Johor and Hutan Melintang, Perak.
Both camps are located within the federal seats of Sembrong and Bagan Datok, which are held by Umno’s Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi respectively.
Nasaie claimed that the land swap deals were used to bolsters voters for Hishammuddin and Zahid.
Last Tuesday, Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu said internal investigations into the 16 land swaps valued at an estimated RM4.9 billion found that at least RM500 million was indirectly lost through their valuations.
In early April last year, former minister Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz publicly alleged that land belonging to the Armed Forces had been swapped by a company supposedly under the control of three key individuals.
Shortly thereafter the ministry responded with a statement, denying this was the case and saying various measures were used for the development projects, which include privatisation through land-swapping deals.