Archive for July, 2016

31
Jul
16

Apandi, stop defending PM and tell us who ‘M’sian Official 1’ is

Apandi, stop defending PM and tell us who ‘M’sian Official 1’ is

The attorney-general (AG) Mohamed Apandi Ali’s response to the US Department of Justice (DOJ) suit yesterday raises serious concerns.

Firstly, and with respect, he should decide where he stands. Is he the defence lawyer for the prime minister or is the public prosecutor of Malaysia?

To my mind, he should not be leaping to the prime minister’s defence. He should maintain his independence and be open to the fact that serious allegations have been made in the suit which may lead to him having to reopen the case here at some stage.

Making broad comments and issuing veiled warnings to the effect that he has “strong concerns at insinuations and allegations” made against the prime minister at this stage seriously undermines public confidence in his office as public prosecutor.

The prime minister is capable of looking after himself. The public prosecutor should remain impartial and independent.

Apandi should also not hide behind legal semantics in attempting to fend off concerns expressed over the liability of ‘Malaysian Official 1’ in the suit.

He says there has been no evidence which shows that money has been misappropriated from 1MDB, and there have been no criminal charges preferred against any individuals for offences of misappropriation of funds from 1MDB.

Again, with respect, that isn’t the point.

‘Not named’ doesn’t mean innocent

It is not the label but the substance which counts. Whether or not there has been conduct which warrants criminal prosecution depends on the facts of each case.

For example, in a civil suit for damages arising from assault, it is true that the suit filed would be civil in nature but the allegation of assault therein may be sufficient to support a criminal prosecution as well.

Likewise, in a case in which a suit is filed to recover monies allegedly wrongly used, wrongly channelled or otherwise. The same facts could warrant a criminal investigation and criminal charge as well.

So, to say that particular individuals have not been named or that no criminal charges have been preferred against any individual does not justify a closure to the subject of discussion altogether.

In this case, Apandi should start by telling us who ‘Malaysian Official 1’ is.

Apandi must further respond to the questions posed by DAP MP for Petaling Jaya Utara Tony Pua yesterday when he asked:

“Page 75, paragraph 263 of the document (the civil suit) states that attorney-general Mohamed Apandi Ali had cleared Malaysian Official 1 in the inquiry on US$681 million.”

He therefore called on Apandi to explain the latter’s claim that the money channelled into those accounts was from an Arab donor.

Pua said the documents from the US DOJ suggests that the US$681 million originated from a US$3 billion bond 1MDB had raised.

This strikes at the heart of the propriety of the decision made by Apandi. This must now, in light of the suit, be addressed.


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Apandi, stop defending PM and tell us who ‘M’sian Official 1’ is
22 July 2016 – malaysiakini

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31
Jul
16

Lawyer tells Shahrizat : M’sians not stupid as cows

Lawyer tells Shahrizat : M’sians not stupid as cows

A lawyer has told Wanita Umno chief Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, who classed the US’ forfeiture lawsuit against 1MDB as foreign meddling, that Malaysians are not as stupid as cows.

“My dearest Shahrizat, the US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) court forfeiture cause papers have nothing whatsoever to do with foreigners meddling in our beloved nation’s internal affairs.

“In fact, it’s to do with our own fraudsters meddling with foreign laws and regulations,” said Haniff Khatri Abdulla in a Facebook post today.

“So, don’t ever dare to think that we, the rakyat Malaysia, are as stupid as cows. In fact, even acual cows by now, should already know the actual truth,” he added.

Shahrizat had stated the movement rejected all efforts by certain quarters to take the opportunity of using foreign powers, and the recent scandal involving alleged money laundering in 1MDB, to topple Malaysia’s democratically elected government.

“The consequences of such tactics will get out of hand, just as what occurred to Iraq and Syria, which in the end not only invited conflict, but also prolonged the civil war,” she said yesterday.

Ahmad Shabery questioned

In another Facebook post uploaded today, Haniff also questioned if Umno minister Ahmad Shabery Cheek should defend individuals named in DOJ lawsuit.

“Since when a Malaysian minister is entrusted to become a spokeperson for two Malaysians who were summoned abroad for (allegedly) acquiring illegal funds and assets of a company owned by the government?,” asked the lawyer.

He was responding to the agriculture and agro-based industries minister who yesterday dismissed the DOJ’s lawsuit against Prime Minister Najib Razak stepson Riza Shariz Abdul Aziz and Jho Low as a “normal matter”.

Haniff urged the minister to read the lawsuit documents filed by US government against Riza and Low thoroughly.

“As a minister, shouldn’t you ask if the assets, which DOJ applied to seize, were obtained through misappropration of 1MDB funds,” he said.

The minister should instead ask how could the Malaysian government reclaim other assets in Malaysia or abroad that belonged to the duo, added Haniff.

“How could you defend the duo’s right as though this is far more important than the right of Malaysians? Is this the attitude and behaviour expected from a minister ?” he asked.

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Lawyer tells Shahrizat : M’sians not stupid as cows
24 July 2016

30
Jul
16

What is kleptocracy?

What is kleptocracy?

COMMENT In 2004 Transparency International named Indonesia president Suharto as the most corrupt world leader of the past 20 year who stole between US$15 billion to US$35 billion. He topped notorious kleptocrat Ferdinand Marcos of the Phillipines who robbed between US$5 billion to US$10 billion.

What is actually kleptocracy?

‘Klepto’ is thief, ‘cracy’ is rule.

Therefore, literally kleptocracy means ‘rule by thieves’.

A rule of government of any possible kind, which those in power exploit and steal national resources.

That used its power and official position for personal gain or to steal from its people.

Aiming to stay in power – corruption, collusion and nepotism.

A government dominated by unethical leaders but who pretend to be honest. In reality there is rampant greed and involvement in corruption.

Impose a massive tax burden on the public and enterprises.

A kleptocracy government treats their country’s treasure as though it were their own bank account.

Exploits the wealth of the public and uses the proceeds for their own use or glorification.

They spend funds on luxury projects to obtain more commissions.

A government that practices cronyism and nepotism by awarding prime contracts and civil service posts to relatives or personal friends rather than being given to competent candidates.

Create projects at policy level as the main reason to funnel money out of the treasury to themselves or cronies with little viability or necessity of the projects. More projects and programmes mean more money.

In actual fact, those are public money and should be used to build schools, hospitals, kampung roads and houses for the public.

In order for a country to be qualified to be labelled as a kleptocracy, it has to meet the above criteria.

What happened to the corrupted leaders?

Eventually, most of the corrupted leaders were ousted, got arrested, prosecuted or sentenced to life in prison. Worst of all, their spouses, children, grandchildren and families suffered and were humiliated for generations.

Are you ready for the consequences of these actions?

AKHBAR SATAR is president, Transparency International-Malaysia (TI-M).


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What is kleptocracy?
Akhbar Satar
24 July 2016 – malaysiakini

30
Jul
16

Who else had RM2.6b in his account, asks Muhyiddin

Who else had RM2.6b in his account, asks Muhyiddin

Based on information contained in the US Department of Justice civil suits against 1MDB, Muhyiddin Yassin indicated it is clear who the ‘Malaysian Official 1′ mentioned in the documents is.

“It was clearly stated in the DOJ report that this person had US$681 (RM2.6 billion) in his private account in Ambank Malaysia.

“We don’t know of any other apart from Najib who was reported to have that amount of money in his personal account with Ambank,” said the former deputy premier.

Muhyiddin also accused attorney-general Mohamed Apandi Ali of failing to do his job if the latter is in the dark over the identity of ‘Malaysian Official 1′.

He said Apandi should check with his counterpart in the US to find out who this person is.

“The Malaysian attorney-general is not doing the job he is entrusted with. How logical is it to say that the civil action in the US does not involve Najib? Who is ‘Malaysian Official’ 1 as understood by the AG, and mentioned in the DOJ filing?

“If he does not know, can’t he ask his counterpart in the US who this ‘Malaysian Official’ 1 is,” he added in a Facebook posting.

Instead of protecting Najib, the AG should send a local team of investigators abroad to follow up on the case and protect the interest of Malaysians, said Muhyiddin.

More importantly, Apandi should tell the police and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission to reopen their investigation papers on 1MDB, said the former deputy prime minister.

“How is it that our investigators did not find any evidence on the disappearance of 1MDB money while foreign investigators did?

“Shouldn’t this have shocked the AG? Shouldn’t this be the priority? Not protecting the PM.

“Clearly the Malaysian public can no longer depend on him (Apandi) to defend our national interests,” said the Pagoh MP.

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Who else had RM2.6b in his account, asks Muhyiddin
23 July 2016 – malaysiakini

29
Jul
16

Response by AG, IGP and MACC to DOJ civil suit is shocking

Response by AG, IGP and MACC to DOJ civil suit is shocking

With the revelation by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) about the civil forfeiture suits against Jho Low and Riza Aziz, the damning evidence should have opened a Pandora’s box that would cause the attorney-general (AG), Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to commence immediate investigations.

Instead, the response by the head of the three branches of our law enforcement offices is shocking to say the least. The AG had the gall to say that there was no misappropriation of 1MDB funds and that Najib Abdul Razak was not fingered in the civil suit. Hence in his intelligent conclusion no further action was necessary.

The IGP showed his alleged incompetence by saying that since it was a civil action to forfeit the asset he would not meddle in the case. And as for the MACC head, his only comment was that they were working with the FBI as required under the UN convention.

In all seriousness, US$3.5 billion of our sovereign wealth fund was misappropriated and here we have three branches of law enforcement displaying a nonchalant attitude as if it was none of their business to investigate under the pretext that it was a civil matter.

Instead of instructing the custodian of law to investigate, the PM deems it fit to be more concerned about the accused being charged with embezzlement and money-laundering. Should he not be more concerned that US$3.5 billion from the 1MDB sovereign wealth fund was being exposed as being misappropriated under his watch?

Quite understandably, the court papers mentioned 36 times an individual with the name of ‘Malaysian Official 1′ who happens to be a relative of Riza Aziz and who had, through a scheme of laundering, transferred a substantial sum of money from the 1MDB funds to his own personal account. And without a shadow of doubt, the Malaysian official one is none other than our PM, Najib.

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Response by AG, IGP and MACC to DOJ civil suit is shocking
Richard Teo
26 July 2016 – malaysiakini

29
Jul
16

The Noose Tightens on 1MDB

The Noose Tightens on 1MDB

For those who missed the live-streaming of the United States Department of Justice Press Conference on Wednesday, July 20, 2016 in Washington, DC, regarding the 1MDB scandal, here is a partial transcript. The full transcript is available at recapd.com.

A few preliminary observations. First, this civil filing of asset forfeiture is only the first action following an intense and still ongoing investigation. There could be other charges later on, including criminal ones against specific individuals. The presence of senior officials from the criminal divisions of the DOJ and IRS, as well as the top FBI official, at that press conference would indicate this. Assets do not become corrupt by themselves; individuals through their corrupt acts created those assets.

Second, this is a civil complaint against the assets that were acquired from alleged corrupt acts perpetrated on 1MDB. Those assets are now legally tied up. There could be two possible responses. At one extreme the owners of those assets would choose not to challenge the complaint at which point those assets become US Government property and will be auctioned off. The US Government would recoup its costs and the people of Malaysia would be entitled to claim the leftover. The other would be for their owners to challenge the order. That would incur substantial legal fees as the filings are in many courts and your adversary is the US Government with its near unlimited resources. And American lawyers are expensive. With those assets frozen, their owners could not liquidate or mortgage them to finance their defense. Knowing that should be satisfaction enough for Malaysians.

A court challenge would be very enlightening. Rest assured that the ensuing trials would reveal much of the truth.

Third, this is by far the largest (in monetary terms) asset seizure in US history. As such those professional prosecutors would not settle for anything less than total victory. Before this, the largest forfeiture under the Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative involved the Amsterdam-based Vimpel.com, a telecommunication giant, and its wholly-owned subsidiary in Uzbekistan. That involved top Uzbek officials related to that country’s president.

Fourth was the impressive performance by Attorney General Loretta Lynch and her team at that press conference. It is not simply a matter that she is a seasoned professional prosecutor with a Harvard law degree while her Malaysian counterpart is a failed UMNO operative with a legal qualification from an obscure British Inn of Courts.

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The Noose Tightens on 1MDB
July 20th, 2016 – Bakri Musa

28
Jul
16

Entire cabinet must resign over 1MDB, not just Najib

Ambiga: Entire cabinet must resign over 1MDB, not just Najib

All members of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s cabinet must resign as they are equally at fault for Malaysia’s woes, said National Human Rights Society (Hakam) president Ambiga Sreenevasan.

“It is not just Najib that is guilty of what is going on in Malaysia, it is the entire cabinet.

“All those ministers who are saying nothing, it is a sin of omission,” she said at NGO Aliran’s fundraising dinner last night.

Ambiga was speaking on the US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) clampdown on corruption involving 1MDB.

The DOJ claims over US$3.5 billion in 1MDB funds had been siphoned off, and it is seeking to seize over US$1 billion in assets acquired with the misappropriated monies.

The case implicates Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s stepson Riza Aziz, and Penang-born tycoon Jho Low.

An unnamed high-ranking public officer cited as ‘Malaysian Official 1’ is also said to have received US$731 million of the allegedly siphoned 1MDB funds.

The prime minister’s opponents said clues in the DOJ’s documents show that ‘Malaysian Official 1’ is none other than Najib himself.

The Najib administration has been downplaying the US case, saying it is merely civil action.

Ambiga however insists that the court action is based on criminal conduct, and that there are enough clues in the court documents.

She said the allegations also cast a dark cloud over the prime minister.

“How can he possibly negotiate a deal now with the US? How can he go to Switzerland and carry out his prime ministerial duties?

“How can he go to any country when he is under this cloud? Will the foreign leaders trust him?”

She added that Najib is also compromising the country by selling national assets in order to save 1MDB.

This is in reference to 1MDB’s sale of Edra Global Energy to a government-linked company from China.

A Chinese firm had also bought a major stake in 1MDB’s Bandar Malaysia.

Both assets were sold as part of a debt restructuring exercise to plug 1MDB’s debts.

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Ambiga: Entire cabinet must resign over 1MDB, not just Najib
24 July 2016 – malaysiakini




Nuclear lessons for Malaysia (Part 1) (Part 2)
BN govt is directing attention to distant past and distant future, in order to distract people from present misdeeds and poor governance
Felda - A picture is worth a thousand words
How the 1MDB Scandal Spread Across the World (WSJ)
We cannot afford ridiculously expensive RM55 Billion ECRL!
All that is necessary
for the triumph of evil
is for good men
to do nothing.

- Edmund Burke
When the people
fears their government,
there is TYRANNY;
when the government
fears the people,
there is LIBERTY.

- Thomas Jefferson
Do you hear the people sing?

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