Exposed! Penang Tunnel cost secretly shifted to three paired roads

Aug 13, 2016
Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and his wife Betty Chew
Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and his wife Betty Chew

One month ago in my post in late June (Giving false evidence and a property management company under the wife?), I had revealed that Phang Li Koon and sisters jointly-own a Penang-based property consulting services company together with Lim Guan Eng’s wife, Betty Chew Gek Cheng, that charges to provide “services” to those property companies wanting to do business in Penang.

Guan Eng confirmed to the Chinese media that his wife’s jointly-owned company existed but denied that the Penang government had given any projects to that company.

However, we at the DAP Insider are disappointed that Guan Eng does not find it troubling that it is a huge conflict of interest for his wife to be providing property consulting services when he, in his role as chief minister, exco of land matters and chairman of the state planning committee, is the main and final decision-maker for all property-related matters in the state government.

As many large property companies in Penang had found out, engaging his wife’s company for such “services” has led to their submissions to the state government to be looked favourably on.

We hear from internal sources that there will be more charges on Guan Eng related to his shady property-related dealings.

No matter. Now that Guan Eng has been charged with two counts of corruption, we shall leave it to the courts to decide his guilt on these and possible future charges.

In the meantime, in my past article, I had promised to reveal some details about the controversial RM6.34 billion Penang Tunnel project.

For the longest time, the Penang government and Guan Eng has been claiming that the undersea tunnel portion of the project cost RM3.6 billion or RM3.7 billion.

Already, the company awarded this project has been selling and pre-selling billions of state land including this signing in January where the guest of honour was the chief minister himself.

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January 16, 2016 KUCHING: Ewein Zenith Sdn Bhd (EZ), a 60 per cent owned subsidiary of Ewein Bhd (Ewein) has entered into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Consortium Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd (CZBUCG) to purchase three parcels of land aggregating 50 acres at Bandar Tanjong Pinang.

According to an announcement, EZ and CZBUCG have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on August 13 2015 whereby EZ, which is an EPP 10 will develop a development to be known as ‘Wellness City of Dreams’.

Pursuant to the MOU, EZ and CZBUCG now agree to enter into the MOA for CZBUCG to grant to EZ a right to purchase the said Land free from any encumbrances and with vacant possession at RM1,300 per square foot for the said land upon the terms and conditions in the MOA.

READ MORE HERE: http://www.theborneopost.com/2016/01/16/ewein-subsidiary-acquires-land-worth-rm2-83-billion-in-penang/

After being questioned repeatedly on the RM305 million reports and the business model of the project where the state government is paying the full RM6.3 billion cost of the construction but still awards the private company a 30 years toll concession to make even more money, Guan Eng had suddenly dropped the tunnel idea and now wants to build a so-called cheaper bridge.

However, what the public does not get to see is their internal costings for the project.

The tunnel is no longer costed at RM3.7 billion but is now estimated to cost RM2.8 billion.

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Based on Consortium Zenith-BUCG’s (CZBUC) internal costing documents and project finances that they gave to investors, the cost has now been simply shifted to the three linked roads of 20.3 km in length.

These have now made the Penang roads construction cost among the most expensive that Malaysia have ever seen – making a mockery of Tony Pua’s recent questioning the cost per km of the East Coast Rail Link of RM96.7 million per km.

It appears the objective of this project is to protect the maximum price of the project, and the maximum profits – and not based on actual cost.

This suspicious shifting of the cost from the 3rd link to the three roads gives us the impression that the DAP-led Penang government is not serious about building the 3rd link but wants to ensure as much state money is spent as soon as they can.

We now challenge the Guan Eng and the Penang government to reveal the individual and detailed costs of the three paired roads and tunnels … Read More

Source: Malaysia Today