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KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 19 — Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa today denied selling 42 plots of land belonging to the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) as alleged recently.
He asserted that he has never received any application to sell the land since being appointed to the post eight months ago and promised legal action against Cheras MP Tan Kok Wai for alleging so.
“I want to stress that until this very second today, there is not a single application from DBKL that I have received, requesting to sell their assets.
“I also want to say that DBKL won’t sell its assets unless there are certain strong reasons to do so, which we need to consider,” he told a press conference at Parliament.
Annuar said he is very disappointed with Tan’s accusation as the latter was an experienced MP.
He added that Tan could ask him questions about the land sale in the Dewan Rakyat and that he would reply there, but chose to “attack another MP” instead.
The minister said the allegations were serious and had led to public criticism against him on social media, including Facebook and Instagram.
“He chose to speak outside Parliament so he will be subject to laws outside and I have told my lawyer to take legal action following existing processes,” said Annuar.
Tan had yesterday questioned the sale of the 42 plots of land, asking if they had followed the book, claiming that the process seemed rushed.
Elaborating, Annuar said DBKL did not receive development allocations in Budget 2020 or Budget 2021 that it could spend on public housing and was also prohibited from entering commercial ventures.
“So how should DBKL (address) the need of affordable and low-cost housing, which is very much needed in Kuala Lumpur?
“If DBKL wants to carry out housing projects through a cross-subsidy, not by using government funds, they can monetise their assets but it must go through certain SOPs (standard operating procedures) to ensure that there would be no occurrence of integrity problems or losses,” he said.
However, he said there was no need to expand on this as there has not been any such arrangement to date.
He also suggested Tan may have misinterpreted the issue, saying it was his understanding that changing the land structure was not related to its sale.
Annuar explained that private land owners were entitled to check with DBKL on the status of land they proposed to develop, which included land zoned for different use and plot ratios.
As for the 42 plots in question, Annuar said the owners have applied to DBKL but must still go through all the legal processes involved such as the issuance of notices and holding public hearings, and that approval was not a foregone conclusion.
Among the projects, he said two or three have been approved for regazetted, around six at the public hearing stage, and three used for public housing.
“That is the process that is stipulated in related laws. There is no wrong done there.
“Maybe there is a confusion there. When changes have been made, they thought that the land has been sold, but in actuality, it isn't because this kind of thing, you cannot do as you wish,” he said.
Earlier, Tan alleged that DBKL has published three notices to alter the existing Kuala Lumpur City Plan 2020 in recent months, the last of which indicated changes to 33 plots of DBKL land while the earlier two notices indicated changes to three and six plots respectively.
Of the 42 plots, he said four were in his constituency.