GLC head the subject of row
PETALING JAYA: The British citizenship of Raja Idris Raja Kamarudin (pic) who has headed two powerful Selangor government-linked corporations since April last year has become an issue of controversy.
Selangor Umno secretary Datuk Seri Mohd Zin Mohamed has questioned why and how Raja Idris, 58, was picked to be the chairman of Kumpulan Perangsang Selangor Bhd (KPSB), Kumpulan Hartanah Selangor Berhad (KHSB) and executive consultant and adviser of Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Berhad (KDEB).
KDEB is the investment arm of the Selangor Government while KPSB is a full-fledged water services provider. KHSB is an investment company with many land assets.
Mohd Zin said Raja Idris, the brother of fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin, was listed on the official website of KHSB as a British subject.
“Raja Idris is a British citizen. It raises a big question as to why he is selected to head several big GLCs. Can’t Khalid, who is from the corporate circle, find any local talent to run the show?” he asked.
In an immediate reaction, Raja Idris admitted that he was still a British citizen but said he assumed that his appointment was in line with the country’s initiative to bring back Malaysians from abroad.
“Well, I thought that was why Talent Corp was set up – to bring back Malaysians who have left Malaysia and have taken up other jobs and obtained new citizenship in other countries,” he said, adding that he was a non-executive director.
Mohd Zin said there was much unhappiness about how Selangor GLCs are being run, including the removal of senior officials.
He was referring to the sacking of two KHSB company secretaries in relation to the ongoing controversy over the “loss” of a 234ha piece of land in Gombak worth RM250mil belonging to a fully-owned subsidiary of KHSB. Two other officials have also been given show cause letters.
Malaysian Trades Union Congress president Mohd Khalid Atan said it would not be fair to others if the appointment was politically motivated, adding that “priority should be given to locals”.
“Why trust outsiders more than locals? This is an insult to locals,” he said.
MCA central committee member Loh Seng Kok urged Raja Idris to give up his British citizenship, asking whether it was wise for him to have access to so much information involving state assets.