Five Newsbytes to Start The Day – 15 May 2019

Yeo: Malaysia can generate more electricity if all roofs use solar panels
Malaysia can generate 1.4 times more electricity if all the roofs in Peninsular Malaysia are fitted with solar panels, compared with the conventional electricity generation of fossil fuel burning. Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Minister Yeo Bee Yin said there are over 4.12 million buildings with solar rooftop potential in the peninsula. If fitted with solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, it can generate a whopping 34,194 megawatt (MW) of electricity at any one time, compared to the current average of 24,000 MW. Currently, only 2% of Malaysia’s electricity is generated by renewable energy sources. The Ministry is targeting commercial and industrial buildings to go solar and be early adopters of the revised Net Energy Metering (NEM) scheme in order to increase the nation’s renewable energy mix from 2% to 20% by 2030. The NEM offers those who opt for solar energy lower tariffs, tax incentives, solar leasing programmes, and reduced electricity bills. (The Star Online)

Dr M: All MPs, including opposition must declare assets
The government is ramping up efforts to check corruption by extending the asset declaration initiative to include opposition members of parliament. Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said this meant that opposition MPs must declare their assets together with the rest of the federal lawmakers in the Lower House of Parliament. Earlier, Dr Mahathir had said that the asset declaration initiative for the ruling party’s MPs was one of the respective key performance indicators (KPIs) for ministers. Dr Mahathir said the National Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption Centre (GIACC) had proposed five KPIs including asset declaration initiatives to show the commitment and accountability of all ministers. The other proposed KPIs for ministers include the “gift policy”, rolling out anti-corruption plans at their respective organisations; to hold meetings on strengthening governance, integrity and anti-corruption at the ministerial level, as well as to boost transparency on public procurement and reduce the risk of corruption. (NST Online)

Mindef land swaps: Nobody above the law, says Dr Mahathir
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the police will investigate anyone, even the prime minister, over any involvement in the Defence Ministry’s (Mindef) land-swap deals. “Nobody is above the law,“ he said, when asked to comment on the summary report on Mindef land-swap projects, adding that action could still be taken against retired officers if they were found be involved in wrongdoings in the land swaps. He stressed that the intention was to bring reports on wrongdoing done in the past, and legal action would be taken against those involved whether they were in office or not. It was reported that Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu had recently disclosed political interference in land deals within his ministry dating back to 1997. (The Sun Daily)

Scientex buys RM123m land in Gombak to boost property development landbank
Scientex Bhd is acquiring land in Gombak for a total of RM123.28 million in order to boost its property development landbank, with a focus on building affordable homes. Its wholly-owned unit Scientex Park (M) Sdn Bhd (SPMSB) had signed two conditional sales and purchase agreements with Swan Lake City Sdn Bhd for land measuring 607,735.7 square metres in Mukim Rawang, and Fair City Sdn Bhd for an adjacent 65,983 square metres of land in Bandar Kundang for RM12.07 million. The two plots are proposed to be developed into a mixed property development, but it is too early to determine the exact total gross development value, cost and expected commencement and completion dates of the developments. (The Edge)

RM300 mil wakaf land belongs to our family, tycoon’s heir tells court
A heir of a Penang real estate tycoon in the 1800s told the Shariah High Court their family estate in Air Itam worth RM300 million today should be returned to the family by the Penang Islamic Religious Council (MAINPP) as it was rightfully willed to them. Former senator Abdul Shukor PA Mohd Sultan said his late great-grandfather, Shaik Eusoff Shaik Latiff, had only willed to give up two plots of land in Air Itam for a limited period of time for wakaf purposes. As per Shaik Eusoff’s will, his 6ha land on Jalan Thean Teik would be given up for Muslim endowment for 21 years from the death of his last child. As the last of Shaik Eusoff’s seven children had died in 1932, the land was supposed to be returned to the family estate in 1953. The family had previously applied to MAINPP to obtain the land but failed to do so. (Free Malaysia Today)

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