A VIDEO clip accusing Dr Mahathir Mohamad of being responsible for Bank Negara Malaysia’s (BNM) forex losses is making the social media rounds.
Umno information chief Annuar Musa, who appears in the two-minute video, is accompanied by short bites from others despite testimony in the ongoing royal commission of inquiry (RCI), which has absolved Dr Mahathir of any knowledge of the losses.
The video features excerpts from a ceramah by Annuar and snippets from Asian Strategy and Leadership Institute chief Ramon Navaratnam and former BNM assistant governor Abdul Murad Khalid. Murad testified at the RCI.
Annuar also said the country lost RM32 billion, which was half of its foreign reserves, during Dr Mahathir’s administration.
“When I was a minister, we had a cabinet meeting every Wednesday… but it was only 20 years later that I knew during my time, when Dr Mahathir was leading (the country), we lost RM32 billion.
“RM32 billion in 1993 is equivalent to today’s RM100 billion ,” he said in the video.
Annuar’s speech was made at Umno’s first roadshow under the banner “Perjuangan for all – love, respect, unity” in Wangsa Maju on September 10.
Annuar, 59, was a youth and sports minister from 1990 until 1993 and rural and regional development minister from 1993 until 1999.
However, at the ongoing RCI, former second finance minister Nor Mohamed Yakcop told the panel that neither Dr Mahathir nor Anwar Ibrahim, who was finance minister then, was told about BNM’s forex dealings when it suffered heavy losses.
“I did not at any time, from the years 1986 to 1993, discuss with the prime minister of Malaysia (Dr Mahathir) regarding the forex dealings by BNM,” Nor Mohamed said in his 42-page statement.
Nor Mohamed, 70, also told the RCI that Anwar, who was finance minister from 1991 to 1998, was not informed of the dealings either.
Dr Mahathir said he was told the losses were RM10 billion and denied knowledge of BNM’s dealings, saying he only knew what was reported to Parliament.
Meanwhile, Ramon who was also featured in the clip, said “it’s too big of an issue for cabinet not to be aware and assuming that the cabinet was aware, they should have stopped the nonsense”.
The video ended with the message “Mahathir must be held responsible!”.