Penang BN Chairman Teng Chang Yeow should be courageous enough to say unequivocally that Lim Guan Eng lied when Lim Guan Eng said that not a single cent has been paid to the contractor for the under-sea tunnel project but only for the three main highways, so that I can prove in court that I am telling the truth. Teng refused to accept my statement that not a single cent was paid for the undersea tunnel project and claimed that the Penang state government is lying even though Penang state EXCO Lim Hock Seng had repeatedly stated that any payment made to the contractor was for the three main highways?
Teng knows that it is the Penang state government’s policy not to sue when defamatory statements are made against it. However when defamatory statements are made against individual leaders, such as myself, then action can be taken in court. I have taken many defamatory actions in court against the BN media and have won most of them.
The award for the RM6.3 billion project comprising of the under-sea tunnel and 3 main highways was conducted through an open competitive tender. HSSI Sdn Bhd, a professional engineering consultant, was appointed and paid by the state government as an independent “checker” to verify and certify the designs and claims made by the project contractor – Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (Zenith). The costs of preparing the EIA reports will finally be borne by Zenith. HSSI is engaged by the state government as an Independent Checking Engineer (ICE) and not to prepare EIA reports.
HSSI Sdn Bhd was granted the job through an open competitive tender awarded by the Penang State Tender Committee because they submitted the lowest bid. Treasury Instructions issued under the 1957 Financial Procedures Act requires the Penang State Tender Committee to be chaired by the Penang State Secretary and comprising government officials. How come Teng as a former Penang state EXCO, is not aware of such laws?
How can there be alleged corruption in the entire project, when the entire contract is conducted through an open competitive tender? Clearly the entire investigation is a malicious political witch hunt designed to sabotage these infrastructure projects designed to alleviate traffic congestion and undermine the Penang state government in the run up to the coming general elections.
I reiterate that the RM208 million payment was made to Zenith, in the form of land swap of 3.7 acres of net developed land at an above market price of RM 1,300 per square feet, in relation to the three main highways and not a single cent for the under-sea tunnel. Teng again lied when he claimed that 50 acres of land had been “swapped” to Zenith.
The state government did not grant 50 acres of land to Zenith as claimed by Teng. Neither is the state government responsible for any business transactions entered into by Zenith with other private companies which the state government is not privy to or has not approved.
Teng should neither hide nor run but courageously said that I lied when I stated that the Penang state government had not paid a single cent for the under-sea tunnel so that I can take Teng to court to prove who is telling the truth. Should Teng fail to do so, then I can understand why Gerakan President Mah Siew Keong refused to name Teng as the choice for BN’s Penang Chief Minister even though Teng is the BN Penang Chairman, should BN win Penang in the coming general elections.
LIM GUAN ENG