IPOH (Feb 13): The company awarded the 400-hectare forest plantation development project at two different locations in Perak did not get the job through open tender, said Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu.
Instead, he said, the company was chosen by the Forestry Committee taskforce, which he chairs.
He said the committee’s members were the director and deputy director of the State Forestry Department as well as the State Islamic Religion and Education, Rural and Entrepreneur Development Committee chairman Asmuni Awi and State Housing, Local Government, Public Transport, Non-Muslim Affairs and New Villages Committee chairman Paul Yong Choo Kiong.
“The company’s directors have vast experience in managing forest plantations and the company is a capable one, so there were strong grounds for us to approve (the project),” he told a press conference after announcing an improvement to the Perak Housing Policy here today.
Ahmad Faizal was commenting on a statement by Perak UMNO chief Datuk Saarani Mohamad questioning the permit approval for forest plantation development projects at the Kledang Saiong Forest Reserve and Bukit Kinta Manjung Forest Reserve.
Ahmad Faizal also explained that the projects being carried out at the two locations did not involve the felling of trees but replanting.
On Kampar Member of Parliament Thomas Su Keong Siong’s move to lodge a report with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on Monday regarding the permit approval, Ahmad Faizal said: “Fantastic. What he has done is for the MACC to conduct an investigation.”
He added that the DAP MP’s action did not go against the spirit of Pakatan Harapan, and that Thomas had actually referred the matter to him first before lodging the report.