IPOH, September 7 — Parti Putra Perkasa Malaysia (Putra) today accused Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu of alleged abuse of power by awarding state land to cronies involved in illegal logging activities in the name of forest farming.
Putra vice-president Datuk Hamidah Osman said that she got the information from a poison pen letter which was widely circulated on social media last week.
Hamidah lodged a report with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) urging authorities to investigate the allegations against Ahmad Faizal.
“Based on the letter, the state government has sanctioned several forest land, in which each transaction involves 400 hectares of land, for the supposedly the purpose of forest farming.
“But from what we have seen, the real purpose is to rob the logs in the forest, which will cause environmental damages. For example, the land in Kledang Sayong Forest Reserve, which is a water catchment area was also given for the forest farming project,” she told reporters after lodging the report at MACC Headquarters in Meru here.
Hamidah said that even though forest farming is something legal, proper supervision is needed or else it will have a severe impact on forests in the country especially when there is unlimited sanctioning of forest land for such purpose.
She said that the letter also stated that an eight-month-old company, owned by two Perak Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s (Bersatu) officials, was awarded 280 hectares of land for the project.
“Why did the state government gave the land for a company which is only eight-month-old?
“When we checked the address of the company, it leads to the house address of one of the owners. The company don’t even have an office, but was awarded a large area of land.
“We want MACC to investigate this and we also wanted to know if this was an open tender,” she said.
Hamidah also accused Ahmad Faizal of practicing cronyism in appointing leaders in state government-linked-companies (GLC).
“For example, the chief-executive-officer of Perak State Development Corporation (PKNP) is former division chief of Bersatu Ipoh Barat.
“While chief-executive-officer for the Perak State Agricultural Development Corp (SADC) is a former Bersatu candidate, who contested in Belanja state seat,” she said.
“This is not a healthy practice. Is Perak being distributed among themselves (Bersatu members),” she asked.
The letter highlighting several alleged scandals involving the Perak Mentri Besar and his acquaintance was widely shared on Facebook last week.
The letter, which was meant as an open letter to the Perak citizens, was written by one called Yeop Kidai.