Press Conference Statement By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng In Komtar, George Town On 24.11.2016.
I have instructed my lawyers to send a notice of demand for defamation against The Star for printing lies by Penang BN Chairman Teng Chang Yeow that I had rejected a joint-venture agreement in 2013 between PDC and Ideal Property Group, causing PDC to lose about RM 220 million in profit guarantees. The Star has consistently not only published lies but also created lies especially about one flood victim who died when all other newspapers reported the death as an accident because at the time of death, there was no rain yet.
I had not revealed to anyone that I had instituted legal proceedings against The Star but yet Teng knew and announced it in his press statement yesterday. Only The Star and me would be privy to this information. This only further validates suspicion that the mainstream media and BN have such a close rapport, that they fail to demand the same degree of truth, documentary proof, investigative reporting and public accountability as they demand from the Penang Pakatan state government.
The defamatory lies and false allegations on 16 November are as follows:-
“The rejection of the joint-venture agreement caused PDC to lose about RM220mil in profit guarantee and also the authority over its land on Pulau Jerejak,” said Teng.
Quoting “reliable” PDC sources, he said the agreement inked in December 2013 had a potential profit guarantee of up to RM450mil based on a gross development value of RM1.5bil.
He said the Chief Minister, who is also PDC chairman, had, however, rejected the 2013 agreement between TIRSB and Ideal Property.
“Why did Lim keep silent over his rejection of the joint-venture agreement but decided to sell PDC’s 49% stake in Pulau Jerejak to Ideal Property’s subsidiary?”
To date Teng had failed to show proof that I had rejected a deal worth RM220 millon of profit guarantee to PDC. The public in Penang would like to know why the mainstream media failed to press BN Penang Chairman Teng Chang Yeow to show proof that I had rejected a joint-venture agreement between PDC and Ideal Properties in 2013 on Tropical Island Resort Sdn Bhd(TIRSB), that would have generated a profit of RM220 million. Instead my statements have been either downplayed or even blacked out.
In Disposing PDC’s 49% Stake In TIRSB That Had Recorded Book Losses Of RM 40 Million Losses At End 2015, PDC Secured A Profit Of RM140.6 Million That Is Nearly 10 Times Over The Initial Investment Of RM 15.44 Million.
TIRSB was formed in 1997 with PDC taking a minority 49% stake with an investment of RM15.44 million and UDA the remainder 51%. In 2001, BN and Gerakan betrayed Penangites by selling 80 acres of land out of 895 acres in Pulau Jerejak at RM12.95 million to TIRSB, when the then market price was RM 47.6 million, a loss of RM 34.6 million.
Once again the Pakatan state government had rehabilitated and saved a failed BN project as well as recouped our investment, loans and losses. We recoup back our RM4.4 million loan and the amount invested of RM15.44 million by selling for RM156 million. We also disposed off our 49% stake in a loss-making company, TIRSB that had recorded book losses of RM 40 million losses at end 2015, to secure a profit of RM140.6 million that is nearly 10 times over our initial investment.
This is clear case of sour grapes when Gerakan attacks the sale because they failed to do what we have done by recouping the RM15.44 million investment and the RM4.4 million loan. More importantly Gerakan should be ashamed of themselves for selling out Pulau Jerejak as early as 1997.
This is a classic case of a “thief shouting thief”! Despite this remarkable turnaround of also recording a profit of RM140.6 million that is nearly 10 times the amount invested, Gerakan and BN Penang continues to attack us for selling out on Pulau Jerejak to the BN Federal Government. Are they not part of BN?
LIM GUAN ENG