Water restructuring: Khalid doubtful of Azmin’s action (5.4.2016)

Water Dispute FMT

Selangor Menteri Besar Mohamed Azmin Ali is allegedly trying to find a logical reason to justify paying a higher compensation to Syarikat Pengeluar Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Splash).

This was said by Azmin Ali’s predecessor, Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, who is doubtful of the former’s action.

The Selangor government under Abdul Khalid had agreed to pay around RM250 million as compensation to Splash for the takeover, an offer that was rejected and which resulted in the water restructuring process in the state hitting a snag.

Splash, which is among the holders of Selangor’s water concessionaire insisted the company was worth RM2.5 billion as of December 31, 2013.

It also claimed that when taking into consideration the 16 years it remained in the concession which was now to be terminated, the company was worth RM3.9 billion.

Meanwhile, it was said that under Azmin’s administration, the offer to Splash was increased to RM2 billion although negotiations have not been finalised.

Presently, the Selangor government has only successfully taken over three water concessionaires, namely Syabas, Puncak Niaga and Abbas.

Abdul Khalid also expressed his disappointment with Azmin, pointing to the latter’s alleged immature behaviour and tendency to make vengeful statements.

He said this following Azmin’s allegation that Abdul Khalid had paid more than 12% in equity compensation of non-water assets to Puncak Niaga and had sold the land allotted for the Langat 2 water plant to a private company, Bolton.

In the Water Committee debate at the Selangor state assembly sitting yesterday, Abdul Khalid accused Azmin of not giving him a chance to answer the allegations.

“I am shocked and taken aback by Azmin’s attitude which was not only immature but vengeful. He refused to allow me the opportunity to explain the real situation in the state assembly sitting.

“In his statement, among others, Azmin accused me of offering RM460 million in extra assets secretly to Puncak Niaga Sdn Bhd which resulted in the takeover equity value to jump from around RM1.5 billion to RM2.01 billion.

“I want to stress that I never once made any offer secretly. The takeover of Puncak Niaga and Syabas only involved the water related assets of Syabas while other assets were returned to Puncak Niaga,” he said in a media statement today.

Abdul Khalid claimed that the rakyat was getting tired of Azmin’s true colours as he was prone to making confusing statements, especially when speaking in the state assembly.

He not only failed to give a logical answer for all water and land related issues that I brought up, but also tried to hide behind false accusations and slander in the Dewan,” Abdul Khalid further alleged.

He said the water restructuring deal must be resolved immediately at the value of RM9.65 billion to ensure water users in the Klang Valley do not suffer.

Source: FMT

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