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Friday, July 30, 2010

SDO office in Komtar with half a million ringgit mess

The former Penang State Development Office in Komtar, which overlooks the city and the channel that divides the island and the mainland, is a picture of calm and peace.

However, behind the walls, the office on the 45th floor tells a different story - one of dirt, mess and abandonment.

former office of penang state development officer SDO 2Uncollected garbage, plastered ceilings and walls stripped apart, wires hanging loose and abandoned broken furniture paint a glum and gloomy picture.

Komtar assemblyperson Ng Wei Aik (left) claimed that the office formerly occupied by SDO Nik Ali Mat Yunus has been like a garbage dump despite RM450,000 of the rakyat's money spent on renovations.

former office of penang state development officer SDO 3Nik Ali had ruffled feathers in Komtar recently when he called Chief Minister Lim Guan Engbiadap for labelling him a 'little Napolean' over several issues related to state-federal relations.

At a press conference within the confines of the messy office today, Ng demanded an explanation as to what Nik Ali intended to do with the space after leaving it for another building.

former office of penang state development officer SDO 4Nik Ali and his office staff reportedly left Komtar for the Federal Government office, a huge multi-storey office building on Jalan Anson, after March 2008.

Ng, who is state DAP Youth secretary, said Nik Ali had "wasted public funds" by spending RM450,000 on renovation when he did not intend to use the place.

"We want to expand the state secretariat but it seems we need to spend a lot of money to re-organise this place, which Nik Ali has left in a mess," he told reporters.

"We are still estimating the cost, but we suspect it will be a lot. We are hoping the SDO can compensate us as per the tenancy agreement.

former office of penang state development officer SDO 5"However, compensation also means using the people's money, so we would like to hear from him what he intends to do with the empty space," Ng said.

The office, about 12,000sq ft in area, was leased to the SDO by the Penang Development Corporation for about RM15,000 per month.

"This office would have been a very beautiful and luxurious office but it now seems like it was something that once looked like heaven but has turned to hell," he said.

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