Kedah MB: “We have debts but not RM3 billion”
KUALA LUMPUR: Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Azizan Abdul Razak said the state has debts but not amounting to RM3 billion as alleged by Kedah Gerakan Youth chief Tan Keng Liang.
Speaking to The Mole, Azizan said: “I admit we do have debts, but it does not amount to RM3 billion and we have already started paying off the debts.”
When asked how much the state’s current debt was, the Mentri Besar said that he did not have the figure with him at the time.
“I don’t have the exact figure. I am not in charge of the state’s finances. That is under the jurisdiction of another exco (executive councillor),” Azizan said.
Tan was quoted by a news report as saying that since the Pas-led government took over the state from Barisan Nasional after the 12thgeneral election in 2008, the state’s debt had risen to about RM3 billion.
“At the end of 2007, the state’s debt under the Barisan Nasional government was only about RM2 billion.”
“However, in less than five years, this has increased to RM2.933 billion, of which RM330 million was for loans raised to build the new campus for Kolej Universiti Insaniah(KUIN) in Kuala Ketil,” Tan reportedly said.
Azizan, who is also Sungai Limau assemblyman, said that the state will pay back the RM330 million owed to the bank.
“We will try to settle the matter as soon as possible, the loans will be paid to Affin Bank Berhad starting from this month,” said Azizan.
Previously, Tan had said that the state government should explain how it would repay the RM330 million for the construction of KUIN as the loan was taken by a state government-linked company (GLC), Bina Darulaman Bhd (BDB).
Meanwhile, on a separate issue, Azizan stated that the Sungai Limau Hydrocarbon Hub in Yan is not the state government’s responsibility.
“That is a private project. The owners wanted an approval to start the project and we gave it to them.”
He added, “Now, the project is on hold because the business owners have no money to carry on with the project.’’
“Tan is just lying over the project.”
Prior to this, Tan had said that the Sungai Limau project was done without an open tender and that the state had admitted its fault but refused to acknowledge its failure.
“The AG (Auditor-General) report then showed that there were no due diligence and no feasibility over the project and showed that the failure of the project had caused tax payers money, “ Tan said.