5 July 2015
Wall Street Journal (WSJ) in a report alleged that documents from a government probe into Malaysia Development Berhad (IMDB) showed five deposits into accounts in Najib Abdul Rasak’s name in a Malaysian bank. Sarawak Report blog carries a similar account. Two largest deposits were for US$620 million and US$ 61 million. These were transacted in 2013. Prime Minister’s office said that these were attempts by individuals to sabotage Najib’s government, damage the country and to remove an elected leader.
Auditor General Amrin Buang said that he had completed the investigations into the allegations and would table his report Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee next Thursday. He also said the he was not aware of WSJ’s claims.
A company called Tanore Finance allegedly sent the US$681 million via Falcon Private Bank. Falcon is owned by Abu Dhabi state firm International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC).
Malaysia signed a strategic partnership agreement with Abu Dhabi in 2003, just days before the alleged transfers.
IPIC recently helped IMDB to wipe out RM 16 billion of debt in exchange for unspecified assets owned by IMDB. IMDB’s debt are now at US$11 billion.
Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail said that a task force, made up of members of the country’s anti-corruption commission, police and central bank, had passed several documents to him. Mr Abdul Gani also said the task force had raided the offices of three companies linked to IMDB.
Two opposition parties called on Mr Najib to take a leave of absence while the allegations are investigated. Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin also called for allegations against the Prime Minister to be investigated. Tan Sri Muhyiddin’s call for investigations is widely interpreted as a public admission that there are concerns over “integrity and credibility” of Malaysia’s Prime Minister as the head of government. DPM also said that all the board members if IMDB should be sacked immediately.
Rural and Regional Development Minister Shafie Apdal today became the second minister to raise concern about Najib Abdul Razak’s credibility. He urged Najib to take legal action against WSJ to defend his and the government’s integrity.
Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein today stood up for Najib, calling for calm while the investigation proceeds.
Former Malaysian Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir Mohamed has been very critical of Mr Najib. He even told UMNO, the ruling party to oust him as he is an incompetent prime minister, who allowed IMDB money go missing. Dr. Mahathir said that Mr Najib must tell who ordered the killing of Mongolian model Shaariibuugiin
Mr. Najib accuses Dr. Mahathir Mohamed being behind a political sabotage to oust him by working with foreign nationals.
So far Mr Najib has said that he has not taken any money from IMDB or any other institution for his personal use. What people want is Mr. Najib to say that US$ 700 million was not deposited in any account in his name. People also want Bank Negara (the central bank) and AMBank to say that the moneys were not deposited into his personal account with AMBank. Why is there so much delay in admitting or rejecting the deposits into his personal account? Why has Auditor General who had completed his investigations not commented yet? Attorney General says that he had received all documents from his investigating team. Then why does he not say something? The silence is far too long.
This leads one to think that there is some truth in the claim that moneys were deposited into PM’s personal bank account. All these people are trying to fins ways and means to cover up some thing or come up with some reason or excuse for the deposits.
The fact is that those concerned cannot keep silent for long. Nor can they find any excuse or reason for deposits that will satisfy the public.
Mr Najib is considering taking legal action against WSJ. He should do this urgently to safeguard his name.