Archive for the 'Scandals' Category

09
Dec
17

Pua chides deputy minister over 1MDB investigation ‘joke’

Pua chides deputy minister over 1MDB investigation ‘joke’

PJ Utara MP Tony Pua says deputy minister using Chinese words urging patience is not funny, when anything linked to opposition is dealt with ‘lightning speed’.

PETALING JAYA: The statement by Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Razali Ibrahim on investigations into 1MDB makes a mockery of the enforcement agencies in the country, says Tony Pua.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP criticised Razali for trying to be coy in the Dewan Rakyat and urging people to be patient with regard to the ongoing investigation into 1MDB.

On Tuesday, Razali told the Dewan Rakyat that “God-willing, the truth will be revealed” before using some Chinese words to make his point.

“In Chinese, we say man man lah, man man (slowly lah, slowly). We will wait for the (outcome of the) matter, which is under investigation by the relevant authorities,” he said.

Pua compared such attitude with the “lightning speed” at which relevant enforcement agencies act if there was any issue even remotely linked to the opposition or parties critical of the government.

“The government treating 1MDB as a joke just shows how ridiculously selective investigations in Malaysia are, as the first police reports filed against 1MDB were done in 2014.

“By comparison, the investigation into Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, started with a report to MACC on March 18, last year.

“Investigation papers were submitted to the AG in May and an arrest by MACC was made in June, all in a matter of four months,” Pua said.

He called the government’s attitude “obnoxious” as Malaysians had waited long enough for a decision on a case involving multi-billion dollars that’s already been ongoing for years.

“Worse, other countries have already investigated, charged and even jailed perpetrators involved in crimes linked to 1MDB, while Malaysian authorities continue to drag their feet on the matter.

“How much slower does the deputy minister expect investigations to slow down to?” he asked, on the investigation papers that had been given to the Attorney-General’s Chambers in June 2015, according to the home minister.

“That was over two years ago, and the Attorney-General and the police are still passing the investigation papers between each other.”

…more
Pua chides deputy minister over 1MDB investigation ‘joke’
November 16, 2017 – FMT

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08
Dec
17

Ridiculous to urge for more patience over 1MDB case, says Pua

Ridiculous to urge for more patience over 1MDB case, says Pua

TONY Pua has hit out at Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Razali Ibrahim for calling for more patience over the 1Malaysia Development Berhad investigations, saying it is selective prosecution and double standards.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP said Putrajaya was treating the 1MDB scandal as a joke, adding that it was ridiculous to expect Malaysians to wait longer for an answer to a years-long case.

“Why is Malaysia the most ‘man man’ (‘slow’ in Mandarin) in the world when the rest of the world has been very ‘kuai kuai’ (fast) in prosecuting those who have been complicit in stealing billions of dollars from Malaysian taxpayers? ” Pua said in a statement today.

Razali, on Tuesday in Parliament, had used Mandarin in urging for more patience over the 1MDB investigations.

“In Chinese, we say ‘man man lah, man man’ (slowly lah, slowly). We will wait for the (outcome of the) matter, which is under investigation by the relevant authorities. God willing, the truth will be revealed,” Razali had told the Dewan Rakyat.

Pua said the authorities would investigate at “lightning speed” if there were issues linked to the opposition or parties critical of the government.

“By comparison, the investigation into Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, which started with a report to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission on March 18 last year.

“Investigation papers were submitted to the attorney-general in May, and an arrest by MACC was made in June.

“It took MACC just two months to investigate and the A-G just one month to decide on prosecution, despite Lim having presented evidence to counter the charges against him.”

Pua said the relevant agencies should be just as independent and efficient when dealing with high-profile scandals as they had been in the case of Lim.

“Why don’t we see this level of efficiency when it comes to scandals involving tens of billions of ringgit, which implicate even the prime minister and his family?

“Dismissive comments, such as those in the deputy minister’s speech, prove just how little the government cares about upholding justice and protecting the interests of ordinary Malaysians.

“With billions in Malaysian public funds gone and allegedly used to fund the lavish lifestyles of others, we need to ask who the government is really defending.” – November 16, 2017.

…more
Ridiculous to urge for more patience over 1MDB case, says Pua
16 Nov 2017 – TMI

06
Dec
17

US attorney general calls 1MDB scandal ‘kleptocracy at its worst’

US attorney general calls 1MDB scandal ‘kleptocracy at its worst’

WHILE the Malaysian government maintains that no money was lost in the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal, the US attorney general says it has “restrained” some US$3.5 billion (RM14.1 billion) worth of assets from the national investment fund started by Prime Minister Najib Razak.

“For example, nearly half of the US$3.5 billion in corruption proceeds we have restrained is related to just one enforcement action.

“That action was related to a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund known as 1MDB. 1MDB was created by the Malaysian government to promote long-term economic development for the benefit of the Malaysian people,” said US attorney general Jeff Sessions at the Global Forum on Asset Recovery today.

Sessions dubbed the 1MDB scandal as “kleptocracy at its worst” and said more than US$4.5 billion in funds had been laundered via a complex web of transactions from shell companies ranging from Switzerland and Singapore to Luxembourg and the United States.

“But allegedly corrupt officials and their associates reportedly used the funds for a lavish spending spree: US$200 million for real estate in Southern California and New York; US$130 million in artworks; and US$100 million in an American music label, not to mention a US$265 million yacht.

“Today, the US Department of Justice is working to provide justice to the victims of this alleged scheme,” he said.

Sessions said that without the cooperation of foreign law enforcement partners, the US couldn’t have returned millions in corruption proceeds to compensate victims.

“That includes approximately US$119 million to the people of Italy, US$115 million to the people of Kazakhstan, more than US$20 million to the people of Peru, and millions more to the people of Nicaragua, South Korea and Taiwan,” he said.

So far, the Malaysian government has refused to cooperate with foreign law enforcement partners, as can be seen by the rejection of Switzerland’s request for mutual legal assistance (MLA) twice.

Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) executive director Cynthia Gabriel said Sessions’ comments showed that the 1MDB case was “very much alive” and that Attorney General Apandi Ali was “duty-bound” to reopen the case.

“We are vindicated in that the American attorney general, in not so many words, said the case was very much alive and that this is the largest case they are pursuing. This is something that the Malaysian government pretends doesn’t exist,” she said.

Gabriel said that Malaysia’s reluctance to cooperate with foreign law enforcement had caused problems in the foreign nations returning seized 1MDB funds and assets.

“The Global Forum on Asset Recovery is a global effort organised by the World Bank as an initiative and is supported by the US and UK.

…more
US attorney general calls 1MDB scandal ‘kleptocracy at its worst’
5 Dec 2017 – TMI

05
Dec
17

ANZ Bank officers aware of RM2.6 billion transfers into Najib’s accounts

ANZ Bank officers aware of RM2.6 billion transfers into Najib’s accounts

THREE senior ANZ Bank officials were told about the large money transfers into Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal account in AmBank, according to a news report by Australia’s Special Broadcasting Service (SBS) yesterday.

SBS News said the three senior ANZ officials were part of the AmBank board of directors and they were briefed about the large transactions on multiple occasions between September 2014 and November 2014.

The report said that AmBank’s then chief executive officer Ashok Ramamurthy, a former ANZ official seconded to AmBank, was instructed to report the big money transfers to Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM).

The public-funded broadcaster said it has contacted BNM about when they were notified about the transfers.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) revealed in 2015 that some US$700 million (then about RM2.6 billion) of deposits were wired into Najib’s personal account in AmBank between January 2011 and April 2013.

WSJ further alleged that the money came from state investment fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd via an elaborate system of money movement involving offshore accounts in the Cayman Islands, United States, Switzerland and Singapore.

Najib has denied any wrongdoing and said that the funds came from the royal family in Saudi Arabia to promote moderate Islam and combat terrorism.

According to SBS, the Australian banking giant had three officials on the AmBank’s board as it was the single largest shareholder with a 24% stake, purchased in 2006.

“ANZ’s 24% stake in AmBank, purchased in 2006, gives it the right to appoint key management positions at AmBank and the right to hold up to four seats on the 12-member AmBank board.

According to SBS, ANZ chief executive Shayne Elliott told an Australian parliamentary inquiry in October 2016 that no ANZ employee was involved in what has happened in AmBank.

“AmBank has conducted those investigations. The allegations around AmBank revolve around a company called 1MDB. ANZ has had no relationship with that company. No employees of ANZ have had any involvement in that company or what has alleged to have happened at AmBank,” Elliott said.

According to the SBS report, Elliot said that when staff were seconded from ANZ to AmBank they were no longer ANZ employees, did not report back to ANZ and were only responsible to the AmBank board.

“Once those employees are seconded there, they essentially sever their ties with ANZ almost 100%,” Elliott said. – November 14, 2017.

…more
ANZ Bank officers aware of RM2.6 billion transfers into Najib’s accounts
14 Nov 2017 – TMI

27
Nov
17

MACC will open more files on Felda, says Shahrir

MACC will open more files on Felda, says Shahrir

THE Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) will be investigating more cases involving wrongdoing and corruption in Felda, said the agency’s chairman, Shahrir Abdul Samad.

Shahrir said MACC’s investigation into the agency is unlikely to be limited to the purchase of a hotel in Kuching, and property in Kensington, London, by Felda Investment Corporation (FIC).

“I don’t think it (the investigation) will only stop with FIC and the Kensington property, but there will be other cases. We are open to investigation,” the Johor Baru MP said during a press conference at Dialogue TN50 with Felda new-generation settlers at Menara Felda in Kuala Lumpur today.

Present was Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

MACC is currently investigating FIC’s purchase of the Hotel Grand Borneo in Kuching, which is affiliated to the 1Borneo Hypermall in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.

FIC reportedly paid RM86.4 million for the hotel in 2012.

Meanwhile, Merdeka Palace, a five-star hotel with 213 rooms, in Kuching was allegedly purchased for RM50 million more than its original value.

Park City Grand Plaza in Kensington was reported to have been bought for RM330 million, allegedly RM220 million more than its original value of RM110 million.

The acquisition is FIC’s first London property and Felda’s second. FIC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Felda.

The Kensington purchase was made under FIC chief executive officer Mohd Zaid Abdul Jalil during the time that Isa Samad was chairman of Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV), another Felda subsidiary.

MACC has called on a few individuals to assist in investigations regarding the purchases and have also raided a few locations, including Isa’s office when he was in FGV and the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) office.

In March 2015, MACC questioned one of Isa’s sons over the Kensington purchase, according to Malaysiakini, citing a source privy to the investigations.

In May that year, Paul Low, the minister in charge of transparency and integrity, told Parliament that MACC found no wrongdoing in FIC’s London purchase.

In January this year, newly appointed Felda chairman Shahrir ordered all FIC board members to resign to facilitate the reorganisation of the company.

Isa resigned from FGV on June 19 after a public row with FGV president and CEO Zakaria Arshad over questionable deals worth hundreds of millions of ringgit.

Isa has since been appointed acting chairman of SPAD.

FIC was previously known as Capital Protocol Sdn Bhd before it was incorporated by Felda in July 2013. –November 14, 2017.

…more
MACC will open more files on Felda, says Shahrir
14 Nov 2017 – TMI

11
Nov
17

Enough evidence for MACC to probe 1MDB

Enough evidence for MACC to probe 1MDB, says ex-anti-graft officer

PETALING JAYA: An ex-senior Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) officer said there is ample evidence for the anti-graft agency to investigate the financial fiasco involving state investor 1MDB.

Ramli Manan said investigators had only to look into 1MDB-related court proceedings in Singapore and the United States’ Department of Justice (DoJ) reports to assist them in their probes.

“The evidence there is glaring and it could be of great assistance to MACC officers,” said Ramli, who retired as director of the Sabah ACA.

The ACA is the forerunner of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission or MACC. The change in name followed the introduction of a fresh legislation and new administrative structure in 2009.

Ramli told FMT: “It is only the MACC that has the expertise and experience to carry out investigation on graft and abuse of power. Police only can probe Penal Code offences.”

He said this in response to Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua’s disappointment with a parliamentary reply that the MACC would not investigate 1MDB as the police, Bank Negara, and the Public Accounts Committee had done so.

Ramli said the MACC also had the power to investigate prescribed offences under the Penal Code, such as criminal breach of trust, misappropriation of property, theft and forgery.

He said the MACC, being an independent body, need not wait for instructions from anyone to start or resume its investigations should it come across evidence of corruption.

“No one, including the attorney-general, who is the public prosecutor, can order the MACC to halt its investigation,” he said.

Under the present legal scheme, the MACC, however needs to submit its investigation papers to the public prosecutor who has the sole discretion to “institute, conduct or discontinue any proceeding for a criminal offence”.

Earlier this week, Pua described the government’s answer to why the MACC would not be investigating the alleged misappropriation of funds and abuse of power in 1MDB, as “shameless and irresponsible”.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Paul Low, in his written reply to Pua’s question, had said the MACC was not investigating 1MDB because the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and the police had done so.

Meanwhile, former Umno leader Khairuddin Abu Hassan said he had since 2014 filed at least three reports with the MACC over affairs in the 1MDB but the agency had never updated him on the progress of the investigations.

“They called me and took statements that lasted for hours, but nothing happened,” said Khairuddin, who was instead charged with sabotaging the local banking and financial system for making reports over 1MBD in several countries in 2014 and 2015.

Also prosecuted was his lawyer Matthias Chang. However, the court later acquitted them on grounds the prosecution had not presented any evidence linking them to the charge.

Khairuddin questioned the need to have the MACC to fight graft when the agency seemed to be controlled and dictated by people in power.

…more
Enough evidence for MACC to probe 1MDB, says ex-anti-graft officer
November 10, 2017 – FMT

09
Nov
17

1MDB purchased land from govt at RM64psf, sold back to govt at exorbitant price

“Very simply, 1MDB purchased land from the government at RM64psf and sold a fraction of the piece of undeveloped land back to the government five years later at an exhorbitant thousands of ringgit per square feet.”

Pua: Cover-up of land sale price shows it’s another secret bailout of 1MDB

The MP says this can be the only reason the finance minister refuses to reveal the price Aroma Teraju paid 1MDB for TRX land, especially as both companies are owned by the government.

KUALA LUMPUR: The government is afraid to reveal the land size and purchase price of the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) land by MoF-owned Aroma Teraju Sdn Bhd from 1MDB because it amounts to a bailout, Tony Pua charged today.

The MP for Petaling Jaya Utara said there was no real reason for the ministry of finance (MoF) to conceal these details as both companies were wholly-owned subsidiaries of MoF.

“There is only one reason for invoking this confidentiality clause, and it has nothing to do with the purported ‘commercial considerations’. It is to cover up the fact that MoF paid over-the-top to buy back a fraction of the prime land it had sold at bargain basement prices to 1MDB in 2010,” he said in a statement today.

Pua said he had asked Finance Minister Najib Razak, in the previous sitting of parliament, to state the cost and size of the land in TRX which Aroma Teraju acquired from 1MDB in 2015.

He said Najib replied on July 31 that the information was protected by a confidentiality clause between the buyer and the seller.

This, the DAP national publicity secretary said, was “ridiculous” as both companies were wholly-owned by the MoF, which was answerable to parliament and the public.

“This is especially since the price of a piece of land is in no way a threat to national security, and the information is certainly not protected by the Official Secrets Act.”

So, in the current sitting of parliament, Pua asked Najib why the size of the land and the purchase price could not be disclosed even though both companies were owned by the MoF.

Najib replied that this was because of the confidentiality clause in the agreement to protect the commercial considerations of both parties, and that the terms were consistent with the key terms used in the market among other similar transactions.

Describing Najib’s reply as “utter nonsense”, the DAP MP said the prime minister had chosen to ignore the fact that Aroma Teraju and 1MDB were wholly-owned by MOF.

“What is the purpose of this secrecy when both parties in the agreement are owned by the government?” Pua asked.

He said, based on 1MDB’s 2011 financial statements, the 70 acre TRX land was acquired from the government for RM194 million, or approximately RM64 per square feet in 2010.

“However, in the same year that Aroma Teraju acquired the above-mentioned piece of land from 1MDB, the latter also sold other parcels of TRX land to other government-related institutions.

“Lembaga Tabung Haji acquired 1.6 acres for RM188.5 million or more than RM2,800psf. Affin Bank, a subsidiary of Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT), acquired 1.25 acres for RM255 million or nearly an eye-popping RM4,700psf.

“If Aroma Teraju had paid anywhere near the prices paid by Tabung Haji or Affin Bank, it would mean that Malaysian tax-payers have been ripped off beyond their wildest imagination.

“Very simply, 1MDB purchased land from the government at RM64psf and sold a fraction of the piece of undeveloped land back to the government five years later at an exhorbitant thousands of ringgit per square feet.”

…more
Pua: Cover-up of land sale price shows it’s another secret bailout of 1MDB
November 8, 2017 – FMT




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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