Johor Bersatu chief denies ‘meddling’ in Pasir Gudang factory operations

Ben Tan
Mazlan has denied threatening a Pasir Gudang Municipal Council (MPPG) administrator. — Picture by Roysten Rueben

JOHOR BARU, Aug 23 — Johor Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) chief Mazlan Bujang has denied that he had “meddled” by ordering the re-opening of illegal factories in the Pasir Gudang industrial district, following a police report lodged against him yesterday.

He added that the allegation by a Pasir Gudang Municipal Council (MPPG) administrator that he had claimed to have a federal minister’s powers was also seen as an attack to slander him.

“Let me be clear that I never threatened the complainant or said that I have a federal minister’s powers.

“I will be lodging a counter police report tomorrow in Johor on the allegations,” said Mazlan in his immediate response to Malay Mail today on the allegations made.

Mazlan, who is also the Puteri Wangsa assemblyman and Tebrau Bersatu division chief, also explained that he never sought the re-commencement of the illegal factories that were ordered shut by the state government.

He said his intention was to request the re-opening of the smaller industries in the area such as car wash centres and small businesses belonging to the Malay community that were affected by the state government’s closure on July 11.

“The Pasir Puteh area in question under the MPPG is within my jurisdiction as it falls under the Tebrau parliament where I am the Bersatu chief and also an elected state representative.

“To me, it is not wrong as a ruling government (Pakatan Harapan) representative to request from the municipal council, which is also under the same government, to re-open the small businesses in the area as a way to assist the community’s livelihood,” said Mazlan, adding that he did not threaten the administrator in question.

The 54-year-old Bersatu strongman pointed out that such small businesses in the area were not illegal factories that have been ordered shut by the state government back in July 11.

He believed that there are certain parties bent on attacking him based on the report lodged yesterday.

“This is a malicious intent to destroy my public image,” said Mazlan.

The Johor Bersatu’s Facebook page had also issued a denial on the issue late yesterday, shortly after pro-Barisan Nasional (BN) portal published a copy of the police report.

Earlier, Malay Mail published a story on a police report that was lodged against Mazlan for allegedly playing a role in the re-opening of several factories near Pasir Gudang that were earlier ordered to be closed due to the recent bout of pollution in the industrial district.

The police report was lodged against him by an MPPG administrator at the Larkin police station under the Johor Baru South police district.

The report was widely shared last night through the “Ops Johor” Facebook page.

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