One of the greatest sins of omission of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) investigations into the RM55 billion 1MDB is the rescindment of its earlier decision to summon Jho Low to testify before it.
The Malaysian public are still waiting for a cogent and reasonable explanation from the new PAC Chairman Datuk Hasan Arifin why he rescinded the decision of the earlier PAC Chairman, Datuk Seri Nur Jazlan Mohamad, who announced on July 24 last year that Low Taek Jho would be summoned to appear before the PAC on Sept. 8 to testify on the 1MDB scandal.
But Nur Jazlan was “kicked upstairs” to become Deputy Home Minister in the “purges” launched by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak on July 28 last year, which saw the sacking of the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Senior Minister for Rural and Regional Development Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal, the Attorney-General Tan Sri Gani Patail, the dissolution of the high-powered multi-agency Special Task Force to investigate 1MDB and the four-month sabotage of the PAC investigations into 1MDB.
Najib’s world-class RM55 billion 1MDB and RM2.6 billion “donation” twin mega scandals have proved to be more intriguing than any long-running television series, having more complicated plots and sub-plots – and we have not seen the end of these plots and sub-plots yet – making the audience wonder who is the Samaritan and who is the real crook.
At times, there is even the “Alice in Wonderland” quality – bordering on the surreal.
For instance, the whole world seems to know that Malaysia’s “wonder-boy” tycoon, billionaire Jho Low, is the main “mover and shaker” of Najib’s 1MDB misadventure, except the government authorities, including the “cari makan” PAC Chairman, Hasan Arifin.
Is this the reason why Hasan is not summoning Jho Low to
appear before the PAC investigations into the 1MDB?
Jho Low has today hit the world news again.
Last year, the flamboyant Penang billionaire captured the attention of the art world when he emerged as one of the art collectors who “buys pictures over US$20 million, US$30 million, $40 million” in a “shopping spree for trophy pieces” to swing the market.
This time, Jho Low has created a stir in the world art circle for selling the works of Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, and Jean-Michel Basquiat for about US$54 million or some RM216 million, at “unusually steep losses on at least two pieces”.
Low sold one 1935 Picasso painting for US$27.6 million (or RM110.4 million) which he bought in November 2013 at a price which was 45 per cent higher – which means that Low suffered a loss of some RM50 million for selling just one painting.
Are such “wonder boys” a boon or a bane for Malaysia?
Hasan should resign as PAC Chairman if he dare not summon Jho Low to appear before the PAC investigations into 1MDB.
(Speech at the Segamat DAP Chinese New Year Open House in Segamat on Friday, 12th February 2016 at 6 pm)