The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should take a leaf from his Singapore counterpart and schedule a three-day parliamentary debate on 1MDB on 24-26th July when Parliament reconvenes and waive parliamentary immunity to give a full accounting of the scandal, which has made Malaysia into a global kleptoracy.
Up to now, Najib and his government have put up an elaborate but artificial charade that the 1MDB scandal does not exist, a figment of imagination of Najib’s enemies who want to topple the Malaysian Prime Minister and undermine the national sovereignty of Malaysia.
However, the fig leaf of such an elaborate and artificial charade has been torn to shreds by the guilty plea of the former Singapore banker, Yeo Jiawei, to charges including money-laundering of stolen 1MDB funds. Yeo played a role in the 1MDB money-laundering transactions and made secret profits on the side.
Even more ominous was the statement by the Singapore prosecutors that 1MDB was the “main victim” of the US$6 billion financial scam by the Penang billionaire Jho Low and the revelation that Jia Wei had agreed to help with Singapore’s 1MDB money-laundering probes, described as the largest in the country’s history.
As at least 10 countries are probing into 1MBD embezzlement or money laundering, it is too far fetched to insinuate that there is an international conspiracy involving at least 10 countries to topple Najib as Prime Minister and interfere with Malaysia’s domestic affairs.
Could it be true – and when and why did Malaysia make so many enemies in the international arena?
It may be possible in the pre-Internet era to continue with such a charade pretending that the 1MDB scandal is a figment of imagination of Najib’s enemies, but in the information era where information travels at the speed of light and with at least 10 countries carrying out criminal or regulatory investigations into the 1MDB scandal, Najib will be exposed and ridiculed as the modern-day Emperor without clothes.
The elusive Jho Low has accused the Singapore government of being motivated solely by politics in its campaign against him when the Singapore prosecutors accused him of victimizing 1MDB.
In a statement issued by his spokesman early today, Jho Low said that any attempt to link him and recent guilty pleas by parties who allegedly made secret profits was “based on unfounded assumptions”.
Singapore prosecutors said that about US$1 billion (RM4.3 billion) purported to invest in a joint venture with PetroSaudi International Ltd was diverted to a bank account beneficially owned by Low.
Jho Low was named as the central figure in the probe into the Malaysian-government owned entity.
In response, Low’s spokesman said: “This is an example of overreach with a politically motivated act and selectively chosen narrative alleging 1MDB as a ‘victim’, when it has been clearly stated by the Malaysian authorities that there has been no misappropriation of 1MDB funds.
“No wrongdoing has been proved in any jurisdiction relating to the alleged misappropriation of 1MDB funds, and this development in Singapore does not change that.
“Mr Low is confident that any impartial party presented with the complete facts will see that the allegations are flawed, biased and create an inaccurate picture.”
LOCH NESS MONSTER & JHO LOW
Low has not been seen in Malaysia since his ill-fated but highly-funded attempt in the 2013 general elections to defeat the DAP Secretary-General and Penang Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng in the Air Puteh State Assembly seat.
In fact, it has been said that “his sightings have been as rare as the Loch Ness monster since Singapore and the United States began their probes into alleged wrongdoing at 1MDB”.
An explanation from Najib is clearly needed – does the Malaysian Prime Minister agree with Joh Low’s version of 1MDB events.
If Jho Low is innocent of any grand larceny or any money-laundering running into billions of American dollars, why has Jho Loh disappeared from the public scene to become a fugitive from justice – when he was at one time a highly publicized party-goer at glittering social events?
Is it true that the Prime Minister had to meet Jho Low in secrecy during some of Najib’s overseas trips?
To put all rumours and speculation to rest, Najib should invite Jho Low to Parliament during the three-day special debate on 1MDB on July 24 -26, as it should be no problem to arrange for a special session where Jho Low could address and answer questions from Members of Parliament on the 1MDB scandal.