The 1MDB scandal is not going away

Book, film on 1MDB scandal in the works

THE 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal is not going away. A book and film on the scandal-hit Malaysian investor, which piled up debts of nearly RM42 billion and money being siphoned off, are in the works by two different groups.

Among those to be named in the book and documentary include Prime Minister Najib Razak, who was 1MDB advisory board chairman, businessman Low Taek Jho better known as Jho Low, former chief executives Shahrol Halmi, Hazem Abdul Rahman and current 1MDB president Arul Kanda Kandasamy.

Others include Saudi Arabia’s PetroSaudi director Tarek Obaid and Abu Dhabi duo Khadem Al Qubaisi and Mohammed Al Husseiny, who are executives of Aabar, which partnered 1MDB in several ventures.

The Wall Street Journal’s (WSJ) Tom Wright, who broke many reports on 1MDB, has been on leave since last year to complete the book which he promises will have “lots of revelations”.

A British production house, Salt Lick Films, began production of a documentary on 1MDB two years ago and has gone into a co-production deal with another company, Roast Beef Productions, with a 2017 premiere deadline.

It is not known if Sarawak Report editor Claire Rewcastle-Brown is involved in the documentary but she reported the production works last March in her portal, which has run exposes on 1MDB since 2015.

Sources said the documentary producers have interviewed a number of opposition leaders and activists about the 1MDB scandal that first broke when the state firm missed its bond payments.

Opposition politicians Tony Pua from DAP and Rafizi Ramli from PKR were among the first to expose 1MDB’s debts before they caught the attention of Sarawak Report and the WSJ.

WSJ won the Scoop Award in the Society of Publishers in Asia (SOPA) Awards 2016 with its “Malaysia 1MDB scandal” report, which launched international investigations into the Malaysian state investor as well global media coverage.

Wright, who is WSJ Asian edition economics editor, won SOPA’s Journalist of the Year Award 2016.

The 1MDB expose also made WSJ a finalist in the International Reporting Category of the Pulitzer Prize in the United States, which is one of a few authorities investigating the 1MDB money trail.

Book, film on 1MDB scandal in the works
30 May 2017 – The Malaysian Insight


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