May 8, 2015
Phnom Penh by The Mekong
Ownership is Nine Tenths of the Law–Nepotism, Cronyism, and Kleptocracy
Where else than in Malaysia do the meek, the majority and the middle class get steamrolled by the rulers of the country. They do not speak out and they slowly watch their country get taken away from them bit by bit, just like lambs led to the slaughter.
Such a scene is currently being played out by the plight of those fighting to preserve Bukit Kiara and epitomizes what happens throughout Malaysian society.
When the Great Wall of Kiara was put up, there were a number of people who said it was a great conspiracy, that as soon as it was up, the outer perimeter would be developed. In particular, this would be done by people who were in collusion with Jabatan Landskap Negara (JLN) and those in the government directing them. Sure enough, that has now started to happen.
On side eastern side facing Desa Sri Hartamas, a developer of Kiara View has started building a monstrosity of a house immediately below the view known by many as “Lookout”. If you go to the plans on their web site (http://www.kiaraview.com.my/seninusantara.htm), you also see a new building depicted with an even higher development touting a view of downtown KL, something that is uncannily similar to the viewpoint smack on the boundary of the Kiara fence and where those who frequented Kiara would often take a breather as they took in the sights of the Petronas Towers and Menara KL.
Also abutting this area is a development by Impiana Land & Development Sdn Bhd known as “Serene Kiara”. Stay tuned to see what their plans are for the areas surrounding Bukit Kiara.
As some of you will have seen in recent news and on social media sites, bulldozers have gone into the northern area just beyond the Pencala Tunnel. Without permits in place, they destroyed large swaths of what use to be a pristine network of trails used by kampong folk, trail runners, wildlife photographers and mountain bikers. The bulldozers went in from Pencala in a fashion that no one would have known about. No sign posts indicating that there was a development in progress and a solitary bulldozer track that went in steeply up the slope, shooting eastwards through the trees until it got into the valley on the other side. The bulldozer did not stop there. It proceed forward following the same trail that outdoors enthusiasts have used for decades, ending up just before the small kampong houses that are below Kiaramas Ayuria.
Yet again, another pristine stream has been permanently destroyed, more trees have come down, and this is only the tip of the iceberg for this area. Eventually, it has been discovered, 115 bungalow lots will be built in this area.
Hold onto your seat. Qiana Development Sdn Bhd owns this particular patch of land. For those of you who do not know, the man behind Qiana is Dato’ Haris Hussein Onn, the brother of YB Datuk Seri Panglima Hishammudin Hussein Onn (our current Minister of Defense) and cousin of our illustrious Prime Minister, Yang Amat Berhormat Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak. Dato’ Haris also happens to be the son of the 3rd Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Hussein bin Dato’ Onn. When you do an ROC search on Qiana, you also find that the majority of shares in the company is owned by Impiana Land & Development Sdn. Bhd., which is also owned by Dato’ Haris.
Now do people start to see the links between the fence, the government and developers?! Don’t take my word, you can see the shareholding structure for both Qiana and Impiana below.
It is only a matter of time before Berjaya also bulldozes the area within the Bukit Kiara Equestrian Centre, without warning. They have already started dramatically raising fees for the equestrian centre members, and they have tried to squash any form of dissent or awareness being made by members. Will Measat (owned by Ananda Krishnan) be the next ones to follow suite and destroy yet another parcel of land in Kiara? Who is conducting the surveys north of the fence on a section of trail known for decades as Janie’s Addiction? Will that be next?
When will it stop? When will those within the Government of Malaysia, Vincent Tan (Berjaya), Ananda Krishnan and others say enough is enough?To start thinking long term, of their legacy, and the legacy that will be left behind for future generations. Green lungs, places of beauty and a quality of life that is needed for all of us.
If you think that the plight facing Kiara is the only misdeed being done by those in power, think again. Here are a few shining examples:
• The 1MDB fiasco – current losses estimated at RM 20 billion to-date and no end in sight. Was this a slush fund set up in the Cayman Islands to enable BN an escape plan when they lose the next elections?!
• The destruction of the forests of Sarawak – how one person, notably Tun Pehin Sri Hj Abdul Taib Mahmud, who happens to be the Chief Minister of Sarawak, has amassed billions. This scandal can be seen at www.sarawakreport.org and an upcoming BBC News documentary that he has tried to block.
• The Port Klang/ PKFZ loss (which is now peanuts in comparison to 1MDB)
• The murder of Altantuya Shaariibuu – while the two former PGK have been charged with killing her and blowing her body up with C4, the ultimate person who directed them remains un-indicted and free to roam the world.
• Bruno Manser –who knows what has happened to this Swiss champion of Penan rights and environmental activism; he disappeared without a trace, unlike Altantuya.
• Bukit Gasing – another place of beauty that faced similar destruction as Kiara, and lost the battle due to individuals in the government profiteering in collusion with developers.
• Kemensah – the unbelievable news that a so-called “East Klang Valley Expressway” has been approved which will cut across this large swath of pristine jungle and a water catchment area.
A few pics to show you what surrounds Kiara:
Coming from Kiaramas Ayuria towards Pencala, the devastation begins.
Bulldozed track close to Kiaramas Ayuria; a section of Kiara that used to be a beautiful single track.
Looking at the entrance to the Qiana development works.
The fence on the northwest side of Kiara, where, adjacent to it, stands empty houses where owners couldn’t afford to upkeep them. Several are now boarded up.
One house facing the fence near TTDI which may soon be occupied again after years of sitting neglected.
The view at Lookout and a new building being constructed at the base of the steep slope.
Looking further into the distance at Lookout, you can see a dilapidated building that has been abandoned by the developer who went bankrupt. This section used to be another network of pristine trails.
And finally, looking up at the dilapidated project known as Matahari in Desa Sri Hartamas. At the time of this writing there are signs that this bungalow is getting a face lift.
Thanks to Cronyism, Nepotism and Corruption.