PETALING JAYA – Tony Pua ridiculed the answer given by the finance ministry over a question on investment “units” owned Brazen Sky Limited, a subsidiary of state-owned investment fund 1MDB.
The Petaling Jaya Utara MP said the answer given in the Dewan Rakyat today was the “stupidest reply I have ever received from any minister in my nine and a half years in Parliament”.
“I asked the finance minister to state the current value of remaining investment ‘units’ owned by 1MDB subsidiary Brazen Sky Limited and to name the bank or financial institution that was the ‘custodian’ of those investment ‘units’.
“But the minister goes on to tell the story of how selling the Edra Energy, 1MDB’s real estate properties and the investment ‘units’ will pay for the 1MDB debts,” said Pua, referring to Prime Minister Najib Razak who is also the finane minister.
“He might as well have added that the sun rises from the east and sets in the west.”
Pua explained that this is not the first time that he had asked the question.
“This question was rejected by the Speaker during the last sitting in July with the utterly ridiculous excuse that it was basically a figment of my imagination.
“I was grateful that the second attempt at posing this question to the finance minister had been accepted, but my joy was shortlived,” Pua said, adding that he received the reply, dated Oct 30, in written form from the finance minister yesterday.
Pua said that the minister’s answer did not need any explanation nor elaboration.
“It could have been less than 10 words, and it would have answered my question perfectly. Value of units, and name of bank.
“Is the finance minister that stupid that he could not understand simple English or Malay? Or he is trying his best to pretend to be a complete nitwit so that he doesn’t have to answer a very simple question from an MP?
“Either way, the finance minister has shown utter contempt for the Dewan Rakyat,” he said.
Pua then reminded the government that the questioned had been asked and answered before, on the status of US$940 million worth of investment “units” under Brazen Sky, previously held in BSI Bank, Singapore.
“Current and former finance ministers, as well as 1MDB, itself had openly stated that the company had investments in the form of ‘units’ held with a ‘custodian bank’ previously valued at US$2.3 billion, of which a substantial portion has apparently been redeemed.
“1MDB had in April this year, further emphasised that the investment ‘units’ would be ‘monetised’ to repay Abu Dhabi’s IPIC the sum of US$1.2 billion,” Pua said.
The DAP national publicirty secretary said it was an extremely valid question.
“More than a year after BSI lost its license in Singapore, we are still looking for the same answers regarding Brazen Sky’s accounts.
“Who is its new ‘custodian’ bank and what is the status of its units?
“Are Malaysians to assume that the refusal of the finance minister to answer the above question is evidence that the ‘units’ are indeed a fraud as suspected with little or no value, and is not held in any bank around the world?”