TTDI residents urge MACC to speed up investigations

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KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 17): The Taman Tun Dr Ismail Residents Association (TTDIRA) is urging the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to speed up its investigations into reports lodged by various parties on the contentious development at Taman Rimba Kiara (TRK) here.

The reports include those lodged by TTDI residents on May 2017, a report lodged by the previous Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng in Nov 2017 and two reports lodged by current Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh in May 2018 and Nov 2018.

TTDIRA spokesperson Khairuddin Rahim said these reports focus on the conflict of interest and possible abuse of power that may have occurred in relation to the TRK development, on which they have yet to receive any updates.

“We hope that MACC will provide updates to the public on the status of its investigation and to take all effort to expedite their investigation. We also hope that MACC will ensure that no effort is spared in pursuing enforcement action where wrongdoing is found,” Khairuddin told the media at a press briefing today.

FT Minister Khalid Samad said last month, that if the controversial mega project is found to have any elements of corruption linked to it, the project will be cancelled.

Taman Rimba Kiara Working Group committee member Leon Koay said only MACC has the authority to investigate deeply into this matter, unlike the public.

He added that the recent MACC enforcement action provides sufficient precedent for the commission to carry out its duty.

The enforcement action he was referring to involved charging former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and former 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy under Section 23 of the MACC Act 2009 over allegedly tampering the Auditor-General's report into the troubled fund.

The Act covers abuse of power by a public officer using his office or position for any gratification, whether the gratification is for himself, his relative and/or his associate.

“The reason we refer to last week’s prosecution under Section 23 is because Section 23 refers to gratification and it [gratification] does not necessarily have to be monetary. You just need to show the benefit [the party obtains].

“In the case of TRK, what we see here is that the project was for the benefit of the entity [Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan] of which the then FT Minister Tengku Adnan [Tengku Mansor] was its chairman, and the development order for the project was issued by the [previous KL] mayor who also sat on the YWP board at the same time the development order was issued, and who reported to the then minister,” said Koay.

Khairuddin added that they now have confirmation that the plot ratio of 10 that had been approved for the project was in excess of the usual plot ratios that were being approved in the vicinity.

“We believe that there are serious issues of conflict of interest and potential abuse of power that only the MACC, with its wide-ranging investigative powers, is able to delve into and investigate,” Khairuddin noted.

The TTDIRA is also part of a joint working committee which has been set up to look at the development chaired by the FT Minister alongside the KL mayor, Hannah Yeoh, three organisations representing the longhouses (two RAs and one Rukun Tetangga) and the developer. All the parties mentioned above will be meeting for the first time today.

“We look forward to participating in the committee and see [to] what extent the [development] plans are to come to an understanding of what can happen to the project,” said Koay.

Last month, the TTDIRA’s judicial review application to overturn the conditional planning permission and development by Kuala Lumpur City Hall was denied by the High Court.

TTDIRA's solicitors have filed a notice of appeal last Thursday and are waiting for a court number to be issued.