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CRIME & COURTS

Land awarded to CZBUCG as payment for works related to undersea tunnel project - Witness

16/07/2021 07:28 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, July 16 -- The Sessions Court here was told today that the Penang state executive council (Exco) had approved the award of a plot of land to Consortium Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd (CZBUCG) as a form of payment for works done by the company in relation to the Penang undersea tunnel and main roads project.

Former Penang Exco member Datuk Lim Hock Seng, 73, said the state Exco, at a meeting chaired by then Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng on Dec 11, 2014, approved the award of lot 702 in Bandar Tanjung Pinang, North East District in Penang to the company.

Hock Seng said CZBUCG then assigned the lot to Ewein Zenith Sdn Bhd owned by one Datuk Ewe, and that piece of land was developed with a mega project known as ‘City of Dreams’.

Hock Seng said based on the preliminary agreement signed between the state government and CZBUCG, the company had the right to name Ewein Zenith as the owner of that plot of land, which was given as a form of payment for works implemented by CZBUCG.

The third prosecution witness said this during examination in chief by deputy public prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin on the fourth day of Guan Eng’s trial on four corruption charges involving the proposed undersea tunnel linking the mainland and Penang island and construction of paired roads in the state.

Wan Shaharuddin: Datuk, have you heard of City of Dreams, Penang? Is it a building built on lot 702?

Hock Seng: Yes, correct.

When asked about the building, Hock Seng said he did not know how tall the building is but he knows it is a twin block.

Wan Shaharuddin: Datuk, lot 702 is situated on reclaimed land?

Hock Seng: Yes.

Asked on the RM75,000 fee paid to Lee Hishamuddin Allen & Glendhill for preparation of the preliminary agreement between the state government and CZBUCG, the witness said the state government did not use the services of the state legal advisor because the agreement needed to be drafted fast.

Wan Shaharuddin: If the state legal advisor had been involved in preparing the preliminary agreement, the state government would have saved RM75,000?

Hock Seng: Yes, correct, that amount could have been saved but it would have taken quite a long time for the preliminary agreement to be drawn up.

Under the first amended charge, Guan Eng, 60, is accused of using his position as the Penang Chief Minister to corruptly receive RM3.3 million to help the company owned by Datuk Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli to be appointed to implement the undersea tunnel-main roads project worth RM6,341,383,702.

Lim allegedly committed the offence between January 2011 and August 2017 at the Penang Chief Minister’s Office.

On the second amended charge, Guan Eng is alleged to have solicited for 10 per cent of the profits that would be made from Zarul as an inducement to help his company get appointed for the same project.

The offence was allegedly committed near Hotel The Gardens, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City here between 12.30 am and 2 am in March 2011.

The Bagan Member of Parliament is also facing two charges of causing two lots of Penang state government land worth RM208.8 million to be alienated to the developer in relation to the undersea tunnel project.

The offences were allegedly committed at the Penang Land and Mines Office at Komtar on Feb 17, 2015 and March 22, 2017.

Guan Eng was represented by lawyer Gobind Singh Deo.

The trial before Judge Azura Alwi will continue on Aug 16 this year.

-- BERNAMA

 

 


 


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