The Kelantan government has been urged to reveal its next course of action after Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) had red-flagged a company which the state has entrusted to protect some 396,000 hectres of forest.
Salor state assemblyperson Husam Musa said that the company, Climate Protector Sdn Bhd, was one of four companies named in BNM’s financial consumer alert on June 23.
The financial consumer alert is a caution list on companies which may be involved in financial services that are not covered by laws administered by BNM.
Climate Protector had signed a deal with the Kelantan government on Jan 9, 2017. The deal covers a period of 30 years.
However, Husam said that the state government must now be forthcoming on what it would do with regard to the deal after BNM has raised the red flag.
“Will they (state government) cancel the agreement? Will they warn the public to not be cheated? Will they just keep quiet as if nothing had happened?
“Will they lodge reports with the police, Bank Negara or the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC)?” asked Husam, who is also Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) vice-president.
Climate Protector is reportedly Malaysia’s first “carbon credit company” which claims to be in the business of “reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD)”.
Five months ago, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said that the deal with the Kelantan government contravened the conditions set by the United Nations.
“The mechanism is based on financing principle for the amount of greenhouse gas emission reduced and does not involve market mechanism,” said Wan Junaidi.
All state governments had been urged to obtain further information on REDD initiatives from the ministry’s Environmental Management and Climate Change Division by calling 03-88861140 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to ensure the authenticity of information on such matters, the minister said.
Despite this, Husam noted that Kelantan Menteri Besar Ahmad Yaakob had on June 26 downplayed the Bank Negara caution list and claimed that the project to reduce carbon emission was “world class”.
“Is the Kelantan MB viewing the BNM notice lightly? People have the right to know,” said the long-time member of the Kelantan executive-turned-opposition lawmaker.
“Is the company using the approval from the state to collect money without the Kelantan government’s approval? Could the public become a victim?”