Confirmed – Zeti’s kin admitted knowing of 1MDB funds in SD
PETALING JAYA: Was former Bank Negara governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz really in the dark over the RM2.6 billion wired to former prime minister Najib Razak’s personal account? Or did she know all about it?
That’s the question that has arisen following a stunning revelation that her family members had received money from 1MDB funds.
Zeti’s husband and two sons have, in fact, admitted to knowing about the money in statutory declarations signed in March last year. The money was in the accounts of Cutting Edge Industries in Singapore and the three admitted to being the beneficial owners of the accounts.
The SDs, sighted by FMT, has been certified to be authentic by the attesting lawyers.
The revelations in the SD came when the portal MalaysiaToday, run by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin, claimed that Zeti’s husband and sons received over RM100 million in funds from fugitive financier Low Taek Jho, or Jho Low, the mastermind behind the 1MDB scandal.
The claims were backed by the statutory declarations in which Zeti’s husband and sons admitted receiving funds in their Singapore bank accounts. The money came from a company linked to Jho Low.
Najib himself has taken to Facebook to press Zeti for answers claiming that it was Zeti who recommended him to open a bank account under his name and not Umno’s to receive “Arab donations”. He also claimed had he asked her to monitor his account for suspicious transactions.
In July 2018, Zeti had denied Najib’s claims that she was aware of the RM2.6 billion, which Najib said was a donation from the Saudi royal family to the government, going into his personal account.
Najib has demanded an explanation from Zeti, claiming that the then central bank governor was the one who advised him to open a personal account to receive the money.
“How can the BNM governor not know when billions are transferred to the prime minister’s account as every large transaction requires BNM’s approval?” Najib asked in a Facebook post.
The SD, meanwhile, states that Zeti’s husbands and sons had agreed to a settlement with the Singapore government to return the money in their accounts to 1MDB in return for Singapore dropping investigations. Section 370 of the Singapore Criminal Procedure Code, which governs seizure of property, was referred to in the SD.
Zeti’s husband Dr Tawfiq Ayman and sons, Abdul Aziz and Alif Ayman Aziz, run the accounts under Cutting Edge Industries Ltd, based in Singapore.
According to the MalaysiaToday expose, the money in the accounts came from Iron Rhapsody Ltd, which was established to receive money from Jho Low. The registered owners of Iron Rhapsody are allegedly Zeti’s husband and her two sons.
Besides Najib, PKR president Anwar Ibrahim and the National Patriots Association (Patriot) have all asked Zeti to explain the matter.
FMT is still trying to reach Zeti, the Permodalan Nasional Berhad chairman, for comments.
Anwar joins chorus asking for Zeti to answer 1MDB claims
PETALING JAYA: Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim has joined the chorus of voices demanding that Zeti Akhtar Aziz respond to allegations that her family had received over RM100 million from fugitive Low Taek Jho, which included 1MDB funds.
Anwar said Zeti must address the matter immediately, including her knowledge on the matter and if she had knowingly allowed transactions involving bank accounts linked to politicians when she was the Bank Negara Malaysia governor.
The PKR president said that with Zeti now heading Permodalan Nasional Bhd, there was all the more reason for her to come clean.
Zeti must also come clean on any knowledge she had when the 1MDB scandal was first exposed and if her family members had benefitted from their links to the fugitive businessman, popularly known as Jho Low.
“Failure to respond to these questions will cast doubts on her integrity,” he said in a statement.
Recently, the MalaysiaToday portal, run by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin claimed that some of Zeti’s family members, including her husband and sons, had received over RM100 million in funds from Jho Low, the mastermind of the 1MDB scandal.
According to the post, Zeti’s family members allegedly executed a statutory declaration in which they admitted receiving millions in Singapore bank accounts, with the money coming from a company linked to Jho Low.
FMT has not been able to independently confirm the veracity of the SD.
Former prime minister Najib Razak had earlier asked Zeti to answer the allegations while the National Patriots Association also joined in this morning, asking her to clear the air about her alleged involvement in the 1MDB scandal.
Anwar, meanwhile, went on to say that the registered offshore accounts have been shown to belong to Zeti’s family members.
He also said that the allegations made against Zeti proved that the country was still far from resolving the 1MDB scandal.
“Those who benefitted and gained from 1MDB must be brought to justice. As those who had abetted in the matter, too. The scandal wouldn’t have happened without the nod from various financial authorities.”