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Sakmongkol ak 47

Saturday, 12 March 2011

EPF should build affordable homes in Sungai Buloh

Here is the problem we have with EPF. Sometime ago, EPF who was given rights to develop the RRIM land in Sungai Buloh, handed it over to MRCB to manage. Or places it under custody of MRCB. It's the left pocket transferring to the right pocket. This is a 3000 acre prime land located just outside Kuala Lumpur but will later form a portion within the Greater Kuala Lumpur.

What was MRCB's Plans? The plan was for MRCB to either sell off the land or enters a JV with IJM. The CEO to be appointed was Mohd Lotfy Mohd Noh who was a director of MRCB. He is now, the CEO of Kwasa Land, a fully owned subsidiary of EPF.

The deal didn't go through. Perhaps the terms of the JV or form of cooperation were not acceptable by IJM. Maybe some people were asking too much.

But MRCB can't do it on its own? Whereas it boasts itself a "property development and investment company. The Group is one of the largest developers of residential, commercial and industrial properties in Malaysia. Our long-standing policy is to elevate quality and innovations in lieu with market needs, as well as bringing quality living to all customers.

It cannot develop the RRIM land that will yield new investments of RM 5 billion, yet it's teaming up with Ekovest to become PDP for the River of Life Project. That's RM 17 billion and you bet, it will be more. But it can't do a project that will bring in RM 5 billion.

The development is expected to feature breathtaking landscape parks, green lungs, open spaces, walkways and water bodies," one party familiar with the plans said. "The township will also incorporate full information technology and data infrastructure (MSC City Status) and complete urban transportation integration."

You see these people up there- they are just paper tigers. They can't do on their own. They talk big about building up Iskandar, and other land portfolio. In reality they are just doing things like any other RM 2 paid up capital Bumiputera developers are doing. Parner with a PDP. You have the resource given by the government. All you need to do is market it. Make deals. Then we don't need people with degrees from Oxford and Cambridge. We need Gordon Gekko characters. Hell- the CEO at PASDEC Corp in Kuantan can do that.

So if MRCB which gloats itself as a first class property developer subcontracts the development of their property to contractors, what's the difference between them and the ordinary Bumiputera resource owner? You are just a rent seeker as they who you despised.

I would like the PM to give assurance to whistle blowers out there, in pursuit of their civic duty and moved by public spirited values to be protected by law. In this way, whistle blowers will come out to bare all the shenanigans and corporate legerdemains carried out by corporate chieftains in our GLCs. The MACC should go investigate all deals done by heads of our GLCs. Start with Khazanah, TNB, PETRONAS, Maybank, MRCB, etc etc. investigate the whole lot!

Back to MRCB. When the deal didn't go through, what to do with the land? EPF and MRCB do not have any Project Delivery Partner. If not, IJM Corporation would have been proudly announced as the PDP of the Sungai Buloh RRIM Land. Wow.

Ok, the bosses at EPF say- bring back the land to EPF portfolio. IJM doesn't want we can find other ways. You Lotfy, come and head our Kwasa Land. You parcel the land into smaller sizes and partner up with selected PDPs. Damn- maybe we can milk more babe!

So you have it- EPF forms a wholly owned subsidiary to manage the development of the RRIM land. Its CEO is Moh Lotfy MOhd Noh the underling assigned and receiving instructions from Shahril Redzuan of EPF who wants to become chairman of EPF- if Nor Mohamad Yakob is in time to appoint.

But here is a bigger issue. EPF takes in deposits from workers and employees. There are presently around 11 million depositors or pencarum. 10 million or so earn salaries below or up to RM 3000 pcm. These are the ones targeted by the PM to own their first homes though 100% financing. I have written this as a step to relieve pressure in the property loan industry. It's a measure to prevent a subprime crisis by using loans to first house owners as a cushion when the big loan defaulters come crushing down. Yes those who financed purchases of 2nd, 3rd or even their Nth homes. These are the potential subprime borrowers.

So why doesn't EPF come out in full support of the PM? It gets its money from employees most of whom fall under the category of RM 3000 and below income earners. Why doesn't it go into home construction? Make homes that are affordable to the majority of the depositors. Leave the building of super homes whose 'super' element is the astronomical price to private developers. The private developers, if they want to build castles in the air, who cares.

You EPF, you who take in our money – you go and find people to build homes which are affordable. You have the moral duty to so. It's our bloody money. Ini bukan duit bapak hang!

You ask your people to go learn how the Singapore government carries out housing scheme under the HDB. Or if you are paranoid and xenophobic about learning anything from that little red dot, go learn from Greater London Council on how they go about doing their council homes. You like it don't you- eating fish and chips from that Times newspaper. Or is it Page 3 of the Sun?


Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 12:10  

who controls IJM?

the same man who has a hand in everything from banks, airports, monopolies on rice distribution and sugar, ports, IPPS....

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 13:43  

there are many things that we could have have done and still can do differently...but as they say where is the moola?

i sometimes wonder how observers like youself and a couple of journos with the sun and the star can avoid being cynical and still ask questions asuming that evetyone is pure like you.

get real lah!

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 14:14  


Sound like u have finally waked up to the fact that these 'educated' Malay M'sians, put into the high-paid position of the GLCS, r in for the take.

How sad!!!!

Alif Ba Ta? Moral, ethic?

Hahahahaha... what's that?

Slogan to fool the kampong folks, indeed.

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 14:43  


Can feel your frustrations and we are with you.

We have been banging ,reasoning and enlightening all these kind of attitudes for years but find mostly against brick walls of "benefactors of NEP"

In the end, as you highlighted the ones able to deliver and actually able to do the same job at a fraction of what is paid for. Who are they?

I tell you from Petronas to MRCB it is actually very much the same. There simply are no incentives to take risks to create their own expertise which takes time, manpower and sustainable working model. It is soooo easy to just double up the price and make the money (EPF's).

That is why we say, the entire NEP thing is just not sustainable not because Malays do not deserve to be assisted, but rather the nature of NEP creates many situations that doomed the Malays to be forever in these positions.

But who listens?

The majority race still wants it to continue rather than finding a better model to improve themselves. Tell you frankly the current model implemented is too simplistic to improve the Malays... ie. just give them the discounts, the preferences, 100% in UiTM, give billions to them etc while neglecting the other critically important part ... the role the non Malays play in the entire development of the country.

If an institution promotes a guy based on race and expect the others to work like donkeys for their "tuans", then you see all these "donkeys" disappear. This is exactly what happens to every institution run by govt or GLC headed by an NEP brainwashed chief.
No sane guy would want to work for these institutions.

What happened? from University to practically every sector, the common factor is degration to one of the lowest and still continuing.

Already we can see right in front of our eyes the deterioration of Non Malays ability to contribute to the development but instead everyone is more concerned in quarrelling about racism and religioius problems. They are leaving and I can tell you more are doing so.

Our neighbouring country is taking the BRIGHTEST of Malaysians from Form 1 to Form 5 with scholarships!

Gosh I say, if you guys do not see what we are seeing, sorry the main losers in the years to come will be the Malays - not non Malays who are doing very well.

Malays have their future in their hands. They must not kill the goose that lays the golden eggs(which they are actually doing right now).

The learned Malays like you should take up the battle cry to implement a better inclusive "NEP" model that builds up the skills and capitals of the Malays instead of "Ali Baba" systems from the lowest to GLC level.

The new model MUST be inclusive and recognise the contribution and abilities of the non Malays in this country. Stop those extremists barking daily and destroying unity using racism and religion intolerance.

Meanwhile guys like us, are studying how to survive and frankly it is not that tough. We have what it takes to succeed. But one thing for sure, we have our pride and will never work for /under anyone who thinks he is "tuan" and expect his share waiting at the table.

As it is, when Chinese New year is around , almost the entire business activity in Malaysia comes to a standstill.

You can't even repair a car anywhere!

That is why we say.. NEP has failed the Malays (not the Chinese)

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 15:05  

I will put very simply thus: "This is the only way to make Bumiputra millionaires and achieve 30% Bumi equity.

You think Bumis can achieve greater heights on their own initiative and ability?
That is why Ibrahim Ali, the great defender of Malay rights, is very quiet on this one.

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 15:13  

You can't even repair a car anywhere!
Anonymous 14:43

You can't even repair a mobile phone? How may can repair computers? They can't even do the 'surat khabar lama' business.

The Malays can never beat the Chinese in business even in a hundred years - not that they are incapable but UMNO wants them to remain subservient to the Chinese so that the rich Malays (UMNOputras) can get richer without competition from the poor Malays.
And these poor Malays will be dependent on UMNO, their protector, for their existence. Little wonder Felda settlers worship UMNO.

Suci Dalam Debu 12 March 2011 at 15:32  


Nampak marah betul ni, terasa bahangnya. Awas tekanan darah, jagan sampai melebihi paras kerana ramai sayangkan karyamu.

Go for it sir, you have a noble duty to help the rakyat of Malaysia. Make your pen a mighty tool.

Slowly but surely, the better-informed younger generation will be able to make substantial changes to the political equation. My crystal ball says in 15 years, when most of the current pirates have gone to see their Maker,we will have a new dawn.

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 16:50  

Salam Tok,
Sad day for Malays in M'sia... at last we get to see that all the oxbridge ceo's of the glc's are just highly educated big time penyangak, just like the mamak sifu - nmy! So melayu nak salahkan siapa? Diri sendi la for letting these assholes samun kita in broad daylight!? melayu, melayu... dari zaman melaka sampai ke post-independence sama saja... suka kepala dipijak2... sadistic... maybe its in the gene already after 400 years of colonialism & feudalism?!
Dhahran Sea

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 17:19  


Just flew in from Singapore and had a good laugh at the "maintenance" work being done on the KLIA aerotrain. How is it possible that Changi airport, catering to 5 times the number of passengers of KLIA, never had to down their aerotrains linking their 3 terminals for more than 1 day's maintenance when the KLIA aerotrains have been down for almost 4 months. Just incredible or perhaps just incredibly inefficient on the part of the Malaysian airport authorities.

There is so much the Malaysian government can learn from the "little red dot" successes and failures but unfortunately the malaysian government is too arrogant and corrupt to do any thing constructive or sit up and take notice of the leaps and bounds made by the little red dot. Instead the government prefers to sit idly by and let the GLCs destroy themselves one by one through mismanagement laced with the cancerous CORRUPTION disease.

The Singapore Housing Board has successfully developed and build homes to cater for all Singaporeans of all income groups. The Singapore Land & Transport Authority has created and build an efficient transportation infrastructure catering to all Singaporeans, irrespective of their income groups. And what do we have in Malaysia? A RM50 billion MRT project mired in controversy ranging from poor planning, mismanagement and allegations of corruption. Even the mooted idea for income earners below RM3000 to own homes is pure fantasy because one can easily envisaged the quality of such homes if and when they are eventually build. If Class A contractors cannot even build stadiums and hospitals at exhorbitant contractual prices without their roofs collapsing at will and on schedule, what are the chances of such RM100K - 200K homes being build without major defects, cost over run and delays?

Your article has surely provoked the minds of right thinking Malaysians but unfortunately there are even more Malaysians who are rather contented to see their EPF retirement funds vanishing into the "hands" of some selected privileged and well connected people.

donplaypuks 12 March 2011 at 17:29  


"You EPF, you who take in our money."

EPF is not a GLC nor does it take the Taxpayers' money or the Govt's. Quite the other way, it's the Govt which has been using EPF contributors' money like it has Petronas', as though it's a private banking arm of PM and Govt!

EPF has an obligation to maximise returns to its contributors and members and should, if it undertakes a project like Sg. Buloh land, sell houses as if it were any other private developer. A pension fund like EPF has to maintain about 5% growth every year to guard against inflation and long-term rise in cost of living for its members.

It's the SSDC's like PKNS in every state which have an obligation to do what HDB S'pore did and does - build more affordable homes for the poor and masses and/or subsidise them on top with cheaper financing morgages. This is where the Govt has singularly failed.

Of course PM Najib and the Govt deserve the lambasting anyway as the Sg. Buloh land was being eyed by every KLSE listed developer but they gave it away to EPF without open tender.

we are all of 1 Race, the Human Race

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 18:46  

Dato Sak,

I wish the Govt introduces a policy of giving priority to first home buyers especially for KL where land for housing is becoming critical. There should be increasing surcharges for subsequent purchases so that opportunities to own affordable homes in KL becomes a reality for everyone. This also discourages speculation.
While we are at it, the Govt should give tax exemptions for each person to own their first new cars (import or otherwise). Subsequent purchases of new car can be taxed accordingly to encourage people using their car for a longer period.

sam/PRAY,it works,  12 March 2011 at 20:47  

I say AK47 you are blazing true blue.I hope you continue to keep it straight and narrow for the sake of all malaysians. Look at syed. He is getting boxed in. He is shifting his position. A year ago he was outside the box. Now he is in the box. Soon he will be covered in the box.

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 21:34  

Salam Dato,

Can't blame those suppose to be responsible yet have no moral bcos they have been learning from the best - the super successful doctor who was our ex-prime minister.

We reap what we sow.

Your standing are right so don't stop the fight for the betterment of Malaysia. Wishing you Good Luck.

Thank you.

Cawan Lama

Anonymous,  12 March 2011 at 22:34  

You talk about GLC CEOs. They'll become millionaires in no time, that's for sure. They'll think they are stupid if they don't become one. Who want to be stupid.

Anonymous,  13 March 2011 at 11:18  

Well this is the current problem of this 50-odd year government. The Rakyat no longer truly believe that they are taking care of the Rakyat. Instead they are taking care of the interests of a small group of elites other than the Rakyat. Call it corporatocracy or whatever. Its looting to me.

My family is from Sarawak. To us, the rampant looting that have seen siphoning of billions from Sarawak went unnoticed by this present Government. These billions are the Rakyat's money. So how can a citizen of average awareness dispel the feeling that this government is not working for them?

Sorry for the digression.

Anonymous,  13 March 2011 at 19:16  

Why need to pay millions to GLCs CEOs if their job is appoint consultants and enter into JVs to get things done?

And when previously CEOs are paid maximum of 20 times entry level grads,now the gap is huge i,e minimum of 100 times and in some cases even 400 times.

Is their inputs 20 times more then CEOs of the previous age?Or are entry level grads 20 times more inferior to grads of previous era.

Does not compute lah.

dahseriknganinflation 14 March 2011 at 03:31  

Dato, they use our money to build homes that we cannot afford...nia ma chau haiiiiiiiii!

Keep it up Dato' Sakmongkol, bagi lagi siku kat hidung pundek pundek nih.

Buat duit tipu company, dia ingat company tuh BAPAK ngan ATUK dia punya kaaa?! anak HARAM!!!!

Anonymous,  15 March 2011 at 13:50  

As a member who contributes to the Employees Provident Fund, I must admit that I anxiously await the announcement of the annual dividend to see how much more my current retirement savings will grow in value.

While I share the sentiments of other EPF members in that we would like to see a higher dividend being declared each time, I must also commend the EPF for successfully maneuvering and steering clear of the aftershocks of the recent global economic and financial crisis to provide members with a modest return. Up until now, most of the EPF’s sound investment returns have been largely attributed to its investments in equities. From what I am made to understand, the institution now intends to capitalize on investments abroad, as well as in properties. In pursuit of what I believe would be better returns, I hope the EPF will exercise as much care as possible to safeguard the interest of its members.

While I am all for good quality and affordable homes, I am therefore compelled to disagree with several recent suggestions and views that the EPF’s proposed development of the RRIM land in Sungai Buloh should be confined to building homes that are affordable to depositors who are in the category of RM3,000 and below income earners.

As a pension fund, the EPF’s role is very clear in that it was established with the intent of not only providing basic financial security for its members in their old age, but to grow the retirement savings of members.

Without sounding selfish or arrogant, in dealing with what is notably prime land, the EPF’s investment decisions should be guided closely by the best practices in investment. What is best for members and depositors in the case of the RRIM land is whether the type of development it so chooses to embark on would be capable of yielding significantly profitable returns which would in turn translate into better and even higher dividends for its members.

While the EPF is a Government institution, it should not stray from its original function and role simply to fulfill a noble cause, in this case to provide affordable housing, even if it meant such development would yield lower profits. As a pension fund that is entrusted to grow my retirement savings and that of millions of other contributors, the EPF should not be pressured into an act of national service or obligation for affordable housing, especially since this is not its primary role and responsibility.

As far as affordable homes are concerned, I believe this is under the purview of Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Minister Of Finance Incorporated (MOf Inc.), that has been set-up and entrusted with the task of providing quality affordable homes for all segments of the public especially for the low income group.
In accordance with the National Housing Objective that is to provide sufficient, quality and affordable homes, SPNB also implements what is called a Rumah Mampu Milik Programme and the Rumah Mesra Rakyat Programme to ensure those in the low income bracket are able to affordably own comfortable homes.

As an EPF member and given the opportunity, I too wish to benefit from both higher dividends on my savings, as well as being able to purchase good quality and affordable homes. In the case of developing prime land however, this is unfortunately impossible without having to sacrifice one for the other. So let building of affordable homes be the role of SPNB. EPF’s role is to build our retirement savings.

As a member and contributor whose old age ringgit value is dependent on the sound investment decisions the EPF makes today, I am therefore forced to make a selfish stand in demanding that the proposed RRIM development be executed in the interest of providing members with better returns in terms of dividend but without putting the savings into unnecessarily high risks.

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