Let’s debate Talam, Pua dares Tee Yong
KUALA LUMPUR, July 13 — Tired of his political foe’s nearly daily persistance over the Talam Corporation debt issue, the DAP’s Tony Pua challenged today MCA’s Datuk Chua Tee Yong to publicly debate the matter and end further dispute.
The two first-term lawmakers have been wrapped in a war of words for the past two weeks over the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) Selangor government’s handling of the property developer’s debt payment, with Pua crowing about the state’s successful recovery of RM392 million in debt and Chua accusing it of financial improprieties.
“I call upon Datuk Chua to end his misery once and for all, with a public and open debate in any language, at a time and place of his choosing, even if it is held at Wisma MCA over the ‘Talam Debt Recovery: A Billion Ringgit Bailout or a Billion Ringgit Mega-Blunder’,” Pua said in a statement.
The Petaling Jaya Utara MP mocked the MCA man for failing to get his facts and figures right despite having studied accountancy.
“If there’s something to take home positively from the series of ‘exposés’ from Datuk Chua Tee Yong and his band of Selangor MCA cheerleaders, it is that he will doggedly persist with making increasingly ludicrous allegations against the Pakatan Rakyat state government, even if it is at the expense of exposing himself as a half-baked accountant,” he added.
Chua, who heads the MCA’s young professionals bureau, has repeatedly called out the Selangor government for allegedly cooking its books.
He had last week alleged that Selangor had used RM1 billion in public funds to bail out Talam, but then appeared to scale back his claims to an overpayment of RM42 million in a land purchase.
Yesterday, the Labis MP held another news conference where he alleged that the state-owned Permodalan Negeri Selangor Bhd (PNSB) was forced to take a supersized RM230 million loan to acquire land from Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI) as part of the Talam debt settlement deal.
Trinity Corporation, the company formerly known as Talam Corporation, has denied allegations that it sold land to the Selangor state government at above market value, pointing out that the valuation fell under the scrutiny of the Securities Commission’s Assets Valuation Department.
Pua called Chua’s claim’s “ludicrous” but continued to rebut the latter, seemingly taking delight in the chance to publicly shoot down his political opponent ahead of crucial national polls due soon.