Penang deputy CM wants minister to resign over abuse claims

By Opalyn Mok
Penang Deputy Chief Minister II P. Ramasamy (pic) said the High Court had in February found the then Housing Minister had acted ultra vires to the Housing Development Act (Control and Licensing) 1966. — Picture by K.E.Ooi

GEORGE TOWN, March 28 — Penang Deputy Chief Minister II P. Ramasamy said today Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan should resign from his ministerial post due to allegations of abuse of power.

Ramasamy said the High Court had in February found the then Housing Minister had acted ultra vires to the Housing Development Act (Control and Licensing) 1966.

The court had set aside an order by the then Housing Minister in allowing a 12-month extension to a developer for a condominium project in Jalan Kuchai Lama.

“Based on the high court’s decision, it is clear that Rahman Dahlan, who was the Housing Minister then, had abused his power by allowing the extension of time (EOT) after receiving a letter from a Puan Sri Faridah asking for the extension,

“The question is what is Puan Sri Faridah’s capacity in writing this letter to the minister and was her position as the wife of a high ranking government that had led to Rahman Dahlan allowing the EOT,” Ramasamy asked.

He added that a company search with the Registrar of Companies of the developer involved showed that the “Puan Sri Faridah” was not a director of the company.

The DAP deputy secretary-general insisted this clearly showed that Rahman Dahlan had abused his power as a minister by interfering in the sales and purchase agreement of the project.

“Rahman Dahlan, please resign from your posts until the investigations is over. The prime minister should not protect him, as he is a liability to Umno and Barisan Nasional. He is not fit to be a minister in the Prime Minister’s Department now,” Ramasamy told a press conference in Komtar today.

The condominium buyers had filed an application for judicial review to quash the Housing Controller and Urban Well-being, Housing and Local Government Minister’s decision in allowing BHL Construction Sdn Bhd an extension of time for the delivery of vacant possession from 36 months to 48 months.

In what was termed a landmark decision, the High Court High Court (Appellate and Special Powers) judge Justice Hanipah Farikullah allowed the application by the condo buyers.

The judge ordered the developer to pay liquidated and ascertained damages to all the plaintiffs while setting aside the Housing Minister’s letter allowing the EOT.