‘New’ 1MDB revelations

KUALA LUMPUR: The police must investigate if there were deliberate attempts to conceal material evidence related to the 1MDB scandal during the Pakatan Harapan administration, says Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

He added that the investigation should focus on current and former key individuals in the Attorney General’s Chambers (AGC) and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) during the Pakatan Harapan administration.

In a media statement which he read outside the Dang Wangi police headquarters, he said that Malaysians were shocked with the MACC statement last week that a balance of RM65mil of funds reportedly linked to Jho Low and 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) in bank accounts linked to the immediate family of a former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor was returned to Malaysia by the Singaporean authorities.

“Media reports had said that as much as RM700mil had been transferred to bank accounts linked to the former BNM governor from 2007 until 2013.

The police report called for an investigation to find out if there was any concealment of material evidence regarding money transactions related to his 1MDB and SRC International cases.

While he did not name the former BNM governor, he was referring to the MACC’s statement which revealed that US$15.4mil (RM65.71mil) of 1MDB-linked funds were recently recovered from Singapore and it involved the accounts of a company owned by the husband of former BNM governor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz.

The millions linked to the company are part of MACC’s efforts to recover the assets and funds related to 1MDB, which amount to a total of RM20.5bil to date.

Najib said it was even more disappointing that former attorney general Tan Sri Tommy Thomas had said recently that he was aware of such transactions during his time in office.

“I am also disappointed with the reply in Parliament last Monday by the de facto Law Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar that the police had known about this since at least 2019 under the previous Pakatan Harapan regime, but were still investigating until now – almost the end of 2021.

“Such information was never made known to me and my legal team for use in my defence in court despite such information being material to my defence in both my SRC and 1MDB cases.

“I was also made aware that another key prosecution witness in my SRC case had similarly received more than RM85mil of funds directly linked to 1MDB, and again my legal team and I were not told about this despite the individuals playing key roles in the SRC case.

“Therefore, I am making a report to ask the police to investigate if there were deliberate attempts to conceal material evidence from me and all Malaysians by certain current and former key individuals in the AGC and MACC appointed during the Pakatan Harapan administration,” he said in the statement.

To questions from reporters, Najib said he would leave it to his lawyers to decide whether to bring up the new development during his ongoing SRC trial. ANN

MCA Youth: ‘Serious questions’ in charges against Najib as Zeti probe incomplete

MCA Youth said there are “serious questions” in the criminal charges brought against ex-prime minister Najib Abdul Razak over the 1MDB scandal.

It said this was because the charges were filed before investigations into the involvement of ex-Bank Negara governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz’s family in the same scandal was completed.

“Questions would also be asked if the crime of concealment of evidence had occurred since information of Zeti’s family being paid (tens) of millions of ringgit by Jho Low was also similarly not provided to the courts for the use of Najib’s lawyers for his defence.

“The fact that Najib was charged first before investigations into Zeti were ever completed also raises serious questions as she was listed as a key prosecution witness in both his SRC International and 1MDB trials.

“Everyone deserves a fair trial and the prosecution withholding this key piece of information may appear to have violated this principle,” it said in a statement today.

Jho Low, whose real name is Low Taek Jho, is a fugitive and a key player in the alleged theft of 1MDB funds.

On Thursday, former attorney-general Tommy Thomas said the investigation of the involvement of Zeti’s family had yet to be completed during his tenure.

“At that stage, the MACC’s investigation paper had not been completed on Zeti and others. I never had the chance to look at those investigation papers.

“What I would say is, if the investigation papers were completed and if there was a strong and convincing case, the public prosecutor would do the necessary.

“If a former prime minister or former deputy prime minister is not immune from prosecution, certainly a former central bank governor is not,” Tommy said.

The 1MDB charges were brought against Najib in 2018.

However, MCA Youth said the Pakatan Harapan federal government at the time must explain why the investigation against Zeti was not made public.

“Zeti was made a member of the (Harapan) government’s Council of Eminent Persons and also appointed the Chairperson of Permodalan Nasional Berhad overseeing RM400 billion of public funds despite the Harapan government already being aware of the said matter.

“Therefore, former MACC head Latheefa Koya and t he police must explain the long delay in these investigations – especially since the Singapore police had already taken action as early as the year 2019,” said the party wing.

On Nov 19, the MACC announced that Singapore had repatriated to Malaysia US$15.4 million (RM65.3 million) in 1MDB-linked funds that involved a company co-owned by Tawfiq Ayman, Zeti’s husband.

Previously it was reported that Singapore had alerted Bank Negara about suspicious transactions from fugitive businessperson Jho Low to a company owned by Tawfiq when Zeti was still heading the central bank.

According to The Edge, the transfers totalling US$16.22 million took place in 2008 and 2009 and were flagged to Bank Negara in 2015 and 2016 when Singapore began investigating 1MDB-linked transfers.  MKINI