Friday, 26 April 2013

Anwar promises to continue Johor’s Iskandar project if Pakatan wins

APRIL 24, 2013

JOHOR BARU, April 24 – The Pakatan Rakyat (PR) will not halt the Iskandar Malaysia in Johor if it wins the country’s most intense polls on May 5, Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said today.
Anwar, who is also the PKR de-facto leader, appeared to be dispelling fears that the opposition pact he leads may not be business-friendly or supportive of investments.
“I won’t batal (cancel) Iskandar but I say we need to ensure Iskandar is carried out transparently,” Anwar said in a speech while going on the stump for retired general Md Hashim Hussein, PKR’s candidate for the Johor Bahru federal seat.
“I am not against development projects ...” he said, receiving loud applause from the largely Malay crowd when he claimed that the Johor people, irrespective of race, were being left out of the Iskandar project.
“... When we take over, the project can be continued but we have to ensure the participation of the Johor people in the Iskandar project,” he told the crowd in a packed tent with a 600-seat capacity this evening, with some of those standing outside the tent spotted in office wear as it rained.
The Iskandar region, which has already brought in investments worth over RM100 billion since it came into the picture in 2006, is one of the country’s success stories.
The southern economic corridor is seen as a key driver of Johor’s economy but has also been blamed for pushing up the cost of living in the state lying north of Singapore.
PR is aiming to make further inroads into Johor – where it had won one federal seat and six state seats in 2008 – in its bid to wrest control of Putrajaya from the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition.
The southern state, which is BN’s stronghold and Umno’s birthplace, has 26 federal seats and 56 state seats.

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