Why return Ijok land to developers? Ex-MB asks Selangor government

Khalid questioned the decision made by the PKR-led government to return the lands to Mujur Zaman. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Khalid questioned the decision made by the PKR-led government to return the lands to Mujur Zaman. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 15  — Selangor must explain its decision to surrender the land measuring 2,198.4 acres in Ijok to two developers whose contracts had been revoked in 2009, Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said today.

The former Selangor mentri besar said such a move did not inspire confidence in the current state government leadership, and was not  “good business sense”.

Khalid questioned the decision made by the PKR-led government to return the lands to Mujur Zaman Sdn Bhd and LBCN Development Sdn Bhd before it was sold to other parties.

“Why are the lands, which were seized by the Selangor government in 2009 when I was the Mentri Besar, surrendered to the developers and then sold to other parties?

“In my opinion, this was not the best practice and not a good business sense in dealing with the people’s assets,” he said.

Khalid also called on authorities to further investigate the matter and all parties involved in the settlement so that the truth can be revealed once and for all.

The Bandar Tun Razak MP said the case was waiting to be heard at the Court of Appeal when the settlement was made, but pointed out that he was never present or even invited to any discussions despite being one of the parties involved.

He added while the case was in proceedings, some quarters had also attempted to make offers to him as the MB to solve the matter accordingly.

“I was determined to defend my decision, which was aimed at restoring abandoned projects that had brought woes to thousands of land settlers and home buyers.

“There were also certain stakeholders, including land brokers and financial institutions, which did not wish to see the project being restored,” he said.

The Port Klang assemblyman said although the matter had only been recently talked about, he had attempted to raise it during Selangor State Assembly session in November 2016.

“The state government should not have agreed with the settlement as it clearly brought negative consequences.

“Now, there is this perception that the settlement was done in a suspicious manner, thus smearing the state government’s good name and reputation,” he said

In 1998, some 980 settlers agreed to allow a few companies including Mujur Zaman and LBCN Development to develop the land in Ijok and in return, they were promised reimbursement with some compensation and houses.

However 10 years later, the settlers are still waiting for what was promised to them.

Khalid, as the then Selangor MB, seized the land by utilising the National Land Code under the reasons that the companies failed to pay the land premium, failed to change land’s status from agricultural land to residential land and failed to pay the premium to change the land status.

Mujur Zaman and LBCN Development then sued the state government at the High Court and on October 22, 2013 they lost the case. They also lost the case at the Court of Appeals on February 17, 2014.

On May 17, 2016, current Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Azmin Ali had filed a settlement agreement with the Federal Court, saying that the Selangor government and the two developers had agreed to drop the case.

After the lands were returned to two developers and sold, each settler received RM180,000 in cash and a house worth RM250,000. The total amount paid to the settlers was RM421.4 million.

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