Archive for category Najib Razak
1MDB financial scandal – the global noose is closing in while at home the Ministers are in sixes and sevens trying to defend the indefensible
Three international developments today are harbingers of the global noose of the 1MDB scandal that is closing in, viz:
• The withdrawal of the BSI Bank’s status as a merchant bank in the city state by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for “serious breaches of anti-money laundering requirements, poor management oversight of the bank’s operations and gross misconduct by some of the bank’s staff” and the reference of six members of the BSI Bank’s senior management and staff to the public prosecutor – after investigations into the 1MDB scandal in Singapore.
• Commencement of criminal proceedings by Switzerland’s Office of the Attorney General (OAG) against BSI SA Bank for allegedly failing to prevent offences linked to 1MDB, including offences of money laundering and bribery of foreign public officials. Swiss authorities believe at least RM4 billion in Malaysian state fund had been misappropriated as part of their investigations into 1MDB scandal.
• Resignation with immediate effect of Swiss Bank BSI’s Group CEO Stefano Coduri following the announcement by the Money Authority of Singapore on the closure of its Singapore branch and criminal proceedings by the Swiss OAG in connection with their 1MDB investigations.
At home in Malaysia, however, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s Ministers and minions are in sixes and sevens, indulging in sophistry, prevarication, obfuscation and downright evasion defending the indefensible instead of being true and frank about the RM50-55 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion global financial scandals. Read the rest of this entry »
MAY 23, 2016
Malaysia’s embattled prime minister seems to be weathering the corruption allegations – and by some signs may even be going back on the offensive.
On Jul. 2, 2015, the Wall Street Journal “alleged” that $700 million had gone into the personal bank accounts of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
On Aug. 3, 2015, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) reported that the alleged $700 million deposited into Razak’s accounts came from donations, and not from the debt-laden 1MDB.
Many opined that he could not possibly survive this disclosure; with several suggesting that he was a “dead man walking”.
If Razak is likened to a pharaoh – a term given to Malaysia’s longest serving prime minister, Mahathir Mohamed, who is now the main protagonist in attempting to bring down Razak – one could say that the period between Jul. 2, 2015 and May 8, 2016 was a period where Razak was “mummified,” safe within the pyramid. Several defensive measures were later followed with the election triumph of the Barisan Nasional (the ruling coalition that the prime minister leads) in the Sarawak state election, suggesting that the “mummy” is now fully resurrected. Read the rest of this entry »
Time for Najib to speak up personally and state which version or versions about the source of the multi-billion ringgit deposits into his personal bank accounts was the true and correct one
Since the expose by Wall Street Journal in early July last year of the RM2.6 billion into Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal banking accounts, there have been numerous diverse and even conflicting versions about the source of the multi-billion ringgit deposits in Najib’s accounts, with the total figure expanding from RM2.6 billion to RM4.2 billion.
The latest and newest version about the source of the RM2.6 billion donation to Najib’s personal banking accounts came from the Director-General of Department of Special Affairs (Jasa), Datuk Mohd Puad Zarkashi in his speech in Canberra in his international “Veracity Tour” to “brainwash” Malay students overseas.
Puad told Malay students in Canberra that Najib had told UMNO leaders when the Wall Street Journal reported the expose in early July last year that he had “Bank Negara documents” to approve the transfer the money (RM2.6 billion) into his personal accounts and that he had discussed it with the Bank Negara governor.
According to Puad, Najib denied the money originated from 1MDB and told UMNO leaders that the money was from the Saudi King (Raja Saudi) to “combat the Islamic State, and secondly, to help in other places such as in Palestine and others”.
The other and sometimes conflicting versions of the source of the RM2.6 billion “donation” into Najib’s personal bank accounts include: Read the rest of this entry »
Puad Zarkashi has let the cat out of the bag – the obsession of Najib and UMNO leaders about the 1MDB and “donation” scandals which have catapulted Malaysia to world’s top nations associated with global corruption
The Director-General of Department of Special Affairs (Jasa), Datuk Mohd Puad Zarkashi has let the cat out of the bag – that despite all the show and pretence put up by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak that all the problems created by his twin mega scandals had been resolved, and that the country must move on, the nation’s leadership are still haunted and hounded by the 1MDB and “donation” global financial scandals and could not move on!
This is why the head of one of the propaganda units of government had to conduct a double-speak “Veracity Tour” to meet Malay students abroad to “explain current issues” – or to be more exact, a “brainwash tour” to mislead Malay students overseas about what is happening in the country.
This is why five months after Najib announced to the world that his twin mega scandals were “history” in his 2016 New Year Eve message, and a month after the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on 1MDB, which only touched on the “tip of the iceberg” of the 1MDB scandal but which Najib hailed as vindication for his premiership, Puad had to embark on a world-wide “veracity tour” to “brainwash” Malay students because the credibility of Najib and his administration was hovering near the zero level!
Unfortunately, Puad is so used to hard and blatant propaganda among UMNO crowds, silenced and compromised by the distribution of various “goodies” at these brain-washing sessions, that he has lost the ability to discern the importance of showing greater finesse and discretion when dealing with more questioning minds among Malay students overseas.
This was why Puad could trot out such arrant nonsense about Najib’s twin mega scandals to Malay students in Canberra, claiming that Najib had told UMNO leaders when the Wall Street Journal reported the expose in early July last year that he had “Bank Negara documents” to approve the transfer the money (RM2.6 billion) into his personal accounts and that he had discussed it with the Bank Negara governor. Read the rest of this entry »
Malaysians should speak up to oppose Najib’s plan to turn Malaysia into a national prison where critics and opponents of the Prime Minister and Government are prohibited from travelling freely overseas
Yesterday, I had asked whether there will be any Minister who will resign on a matter of principle if the Cabinet today is not prepared to countermand the arbitrary and undemocratic ban on Bersih Chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah and DAP National Publicity Secretary and MP for PJ Utara, Tony Pua from free travel overseas.
I have not heard of any news that any Minister or Deputy Minister is resigning his or her post in protest against such lurch towards undemocratic and arbitrary practices which have so far been the hallmark of communist and closed societies, representing a major and fundamental difference with democratic and open societies.
Is Malaysia an open and democratic society or has it regressed to become an autocratic and closed society like the North Korean communist regime?
This is a policy question which should involve every Minister and Deputy Minister in view of the “hair-raising” undemocratic and arbitrary decisions to bar critics and opponents of the Najib government like Maria Chin and Tony Pua from free travel overseas.
The Malaysian Parliament itself has become a farce if MPs like Tony Pua and civil society leaders like Maria Chin could be denied their fundamental and democratic right to travel freely overseas. Read the rest of this entry »
UMNO/BN can only be defeated in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections if there is a “game changer” giving the two by-elections unprecedented national significance and importance
After the 11th Sarawak state general election on May 7, the country is poised for the two Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections next month.
Everybody’s first option is to have a one-to-one contest with UMNO/BN in the two by-elections, but this may not be a feasible or even the best political choice.
I have said that although the inability of Pakatan Harapan to campaign as one united team was a cause of great disappointment not only in Sarawak but also in Malaysia, the results of the Sarawak state general election showed that the multi-cornered contests involving Pakatan Harapan parties had not materially affected the outcome of the state election results.
Regardless of whether Pakatan Harapan had been able to present an united front, the results of the 11th Sarawak state general election results would have remained largely the same – Adenan Satam as Chief Minister of Sarawak, Barisan Nasional Sarawak forming the Sarawak state government with continuing two-thirds State Assembly majority and the question to be decided on the May 7 polling day was whether there could be a strong, effective and principled Opposition grouping in the Sarawak State Assembly. Read the rest of this entry »
Najib’s Ministers have been very busy indulging in sophistry, prevarication, obfuscation and downright evasion instead of being true and frank about the RM50-55 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion “donation” global financial scandals
Malaysian Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s Ministers have been very busy indulging in sophistry, prevarication, obfuscation and downright evasion instead of being true and frank about the RM50-55 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion global financial scandals.
It would be difficult to find a denser statement than the one made by the Communications and Multimedia Minister, Datuk Salleh Said Keruak that the Wall Street Journal cannot convince Malaysians if it does not reveal the sources of its stories.
In fact, WSJ must thank Salleh for giving greater publicity to its latest report about Najib’s stepson Riza Aziz’s purchase of a RM137 million property in London is now part of the 1MDB probe by international investigators.
Salleh cannot be more wrong when he suggested that WSJ reports have no credibility unless they reveal the sources of its stories, as it is the Prime Minister and his ministers who have been haemorrhaging from a credibility crisis since the 1MDB global scandal burst on the global scene more than a year ago, till today there is considerable truth in the claim that “For foreign media, Malaysia now synonymous with kleptocracy”. Read the rest of this entry »
The Business Times, Singapore
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
WITHIN the span of six years, 1Malaysia Development Bhd’s (1MDB) debt had ballooned 10 times to RM50 billion (S$17 billion) and its business deals are now the subject of probes in seven jurisdictions, including Singapore. Could the mammoth scandal around the state-backed fund have been averted?
The answer is “Yes”, given the events at the strategic investment firm from the outset, which ought to have set off alarm bells at various government agencies, regulatory authorities and financial institutions.
In fact, had there been vigilance and proper checks and balances in the first place, the 1MDB controversy could well have been nipped in the bud. Read the rest of this entry »
Will any Minister resign tomorrow on a matter of principle if Cabinet is not prepared to take a policy decision not to emulate communist countries and closed societies by countermanding undemocratic ban on Maria Chin and Tony Pua from free travel overseas?
The Deputy Home Minister, Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed said that the issuance of a passport is a privilege and not a right.
Nur Jazlan’s argument is flawed, for the right to free travel (which includes the right to a passport and to travel abroad) is a fundamental human right recognized by universal human rights declarations, whether Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human rights, Article 12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights or Article 10 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Nobody claims that such a human right is absolute, as it is limited like all other human rights under certain circumstances, but the government must act bona fide, fairly, honestly and honorably and not guilty of arbitrary abuses or excesses of power.
The ban on Bersih Chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah from travelling to South Korea to receive the Gwangju Prize on Human Rights Award and on DAP National Publicity Secretary, MP for PJ Utara and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) member, Tony Pua from travelling overseas are clear examples of such abuses of power and egregious violation of human rights in Malaysia.
This a major regression of human rights in Malaysia, as it marks a lowering of human rights standards which had never been contemplated or practiced by the five previous Prime Ministers of Malaysia – Tunku Abdul Rahman, Razak, Hussein Onn, Mahathir and Abdullah. Read the rest of this entry »
By SIMON CLARK, GEORGI KANTCHEV and BRADLEY HOPE
Wall Street Journal
May 19, 2016
Investigators believe that money from the Malaysian fund was used to buy home in 2012
The stepson of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak bought a £23.25 million ($33.6 million) house in central London in 2012 with money originating from the troubled Malaysian state investment fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd., according to people familiar with the situation.
The redbrick four-story house, built around 1900, is part of a row set back from the road and protected by security gates, a short walk from Malaysia’s diplomatic mission in London’s exclusive Belgravia neighborhood. The registered owner of the house is Qentas Holdings Ltd., a company based in the British Virgin Islands. Mr. Najib’s stepson is the beneficial owner, the people familiar said.
Investigators believe that money from the Malaysian fund known as 1MDB was used to buy the house in July 2012. The Wall Street Journal has previously reported that Riza Aziz, a film producer and stepson of the Malaysian leader, used money that originated from 1MDB to buy $50 million worth of properties in New York and Los Angeles and to finance the 2013 movie “The Wolf of Wall Street.” Read the rest of this entry »
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak has said that he would reshuffle his Cabinet.
Instead of reshuffling his jumbo-sized Cabinet of 36 Ministers, he should do some pruning and remove his Cabinet of deadwood and half-past six Ministers, starting with Najib himself relinquishing the Finance Minister’s portfolio and more than halving the number of Ministers in the Prime Minister’s Department who now comprise some 30 per cent of the Cabinet.
How many of the 36 Ministers were in Parliament yesterday to pay last respects to two BN/UMNO Members of Parliament, Sungai Besar MP Datuk Noriah Kasnon who was Deputy Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities and Kuala Kangsar MP Datuk Wan Mohammad Khair-jl Anuar Wan Ahmad, who was also the Malaysian Palm Oil Board Chairman, in the minute of silence observed at the beginning of Parliament?
The first row of the first block in Parliament headed by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi, the Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and the Health Minister Datuk S. Subramaniam was totally empty while the first block was virtually empty!
Why were some 90 per cent of the jumbo-sized Cabinet absent in Parliament yesterday to pay the one-minute last respect to Noriah and Wan Mohammad Khairil?
There have been some myths about the impending Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections, with nomination fixed for June 5 and polling on June 18. Read the rest of this entry »
Four ways for Najib and Parliament to redeem their abject failure to ensure responsibility and accountability for first global financial scandal in nation’s history
I have visited 130 parliamentary constituencies in the country in my nation-wide “Pantang Undur – Berani kerana Benar” nation-wide tour during my six-month suspension from Parliament in October last year.
Only three days ago, I visited Kuala Terengganu, Marang, Setiu and Besut in Terengganu and Pasir Puteh in Kelantan.
Wherever I went in the 130 Parliamentary constituencies in the past six months, Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region want the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razal to answer the two simple questions about his global financial scandal – where the money came from and where the money had gone to! Read the rest of this entry »
I have visited 130 parliamentary constituencies during my six-month suspension from Parliament and all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion or region want Najib to answer two simple questions about Najib’s global financial scandal – where the money came from and where the money had gone to!
This morning, I want to report to the voters of Gelang Patah that I have visited 130 parliamentary constituencies in the country during my six-month suspension from Parliament and I will return to Parliament tomorrow.
Only two days ago, I visited Kuala Terengganu, Marang, Setiu and Besut in Terengganu and Pasir Puteh in Kelantan.
Wherever I went in the 130 Parliamentary constituencies in the past six months, Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region want Najib to answer the two simple questions about his global financial scandal – where the money came from and where the money had gone to!
I apologise to the people of Gelang Patah for being suspended for six months from Parliament, not because I had stolen, robbed, murdered or guilty of corruption, but because I had wanted the Prime Minister to answer two simple questions about his global financial scandals – Where the money came from and where the money have gone to.
Six months later, Najib has not been able to answer these two simple questions, but his twin mega scandals have continue to mushroom to become ever more monstrous, with Malaysia topping the global charts as among the most corrupt nations in the world like the third place in international website, foreignpolicy.com’s ranking of the world’s “worst corruption scandal in 2015” at the end of last year, TIME magazine’s second ranking of “global corruption” in March or the Economist’s second placing in its second index of crony capitalism early this month.
Six months ago, we were talking about Najib’s RM2.6 billion “donation” scandal and the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal – today, we are talking about Najib’s RM4.2 billion “donation” scandal and the RM50-55 billion 1MDB scandal! Read the rest of this entry »
Why is Najib absconding to UK next week when he should be in Parliament to give full and satisfactory accounting on the exploding 1MDB global financial scandal?
It has been reported that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak will be making a “working visit” to the United Kingdom from Sunday to May 18 to promote investment between the two countries.
It would appear that Najib’s overseas itinerary had been planned to enable him to avoid parliamentary responsibility and accountability with Parliament scheduled to reconvene on Monday.
Why is Najib absconding to UK when he should be in Parliament to give full and satisfactory accounting on the exploding 1MDB global financial scandal?
Why is Najib going away from the country when he should have given top priority to his attendance of Parliament among all his Prime Ministerial duties especially with the 1MDB scandal assuming such an explosive dimension? Read the rest of this entry »
Challenge of Pakatan Harapan is to convince all voters that the victims of the RM50 billion 1MDB scandal are the 30 million Malaysians as corruption is not a victimless crime
The challenge of Pakatan Harapan is to convince all voters that the victims of the RM50 billion 1MDB scandal are the 30 million Malaysians as corruption is not a victimless crime.
In normal crimes like theft, robbery or murder, it is easy to know the victims but corruption seems to be a remote and distant matter of little or no concern to the public, especially as there appears to be no victims.
This is however the greatest fallacy of all – that corruption is a victimless crime. Read the rest of this entry »
Terengganu is a peculiar state where Opposition Assemblymen help to prop up the UMNO Mentri Besar to defeat a no-confidence motion in the State Assembly from an UMNO Assemblyman
Marang is the 127th parliamentary constituency I am visiting since my six-month suspension from Parliament for wanting the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak to answer two simple questions about the twin global corruption scandals which had been haunting and hounding him for over a year – where the astronomical sums of money running into billions of ringgit in the twin mega scandals come from and where the monies have gone to.
I am returning to Parliament on Monday but these two simple questions about Najib’s RM50 billion 1MDB scandal and RM4.2 billion “donation” scandals are as elusive as ever, although the twin mega scandals have merged into one gargantuan global scandal spanning over a dozen countries.
The Global Anti-Corruption Summit in London yesterday has among its objeectives to:
* expose corruption so there is nowhere to hide;
* punish the perpetrators and support those affected by corruption; and
* drive out the culture of corruption wherever it exists.
Will Najib as Prime Minister of Malaysia declare full support for these three objectives of the Global Anti-Corruption Summit in London, or is the Malaysian Government terribly frightened of these triple goals. Read the rest of this entry »
Four parliamentary measures to redeem national honour and reputation in the handling of Malaysia’s first global scandal – RM50 billion 1MDB scandal
Kuala Terengganu is the 126th parliamentary constituency that I am visiting in my “Pantang Undur – Berani Kerana Benar” nation-wide tour since my six-month suspension from Parliament in October last year for demanding two simple answers from the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak with regard to this twin mega scandals which have put Malaysia among the top 10 countries infamous for global corruption – where the monies for the RM50 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion “donation” scandals came from and where the monies have gone to.
I will return to Parliament when it reconvenes on Monday 16th May, but six months after my suspension from Parliament, the two questions of “Where the monies came from and where the monies have gone to” have still to be answered, and have writ even larger, with major developments in Najib’s twin mega financial scandals confirming Malaysia as home to one of the great global corruptions of the time.
In fact, never before had Malaysia seen a local scandal taken such global dimension as to be almost in frequent international limelight, sometimes for days at a stretch, in the past year or more, and if anyone googles “1MDB scandal”, there would be more than half a million returns!
This is not to the credit or honour of Malaysia – but to our great national shame and humiliation. Read the rest of this entry »
By BRADLEY HOPE and TOM WRIGHT
Wall Street Journal
May 11, 2016
At least $50 million allegedly diverted from state investment fund was spent on luxury real estate in the U.S.
At least $50 million allegedly diverted from a state investment fund in Malaysia was spent on luxury properties in New York and Los Angeles by the stepson of the Malaysian prime minister, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal and people familiar with the matter.
Riza Aziz, a film producer and stepson of Malaysian leader Najib Razak, used money that originated from the 1Malaysia Development Bhd. fund to acquire a 7,700-square-foot, $33.5 million duplex in the Park Laurel condominium tower overlooking New York’s Central Park, the documents and people said.
Mr. Aziz also used money originating from 1MDB to buy an 11,000-square-foot walled mansion in Beverly Hills with a 120-foot-long pool for more than $17.5 million, the documents and people said.
The financing of those acquisitions is under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which is conducting a wide-ranging inquiry into alleged misappropriation of billions of dollars from 1MDB, according to people familiar with the probe. 1MDB was set up in 2009 to benefit the Malaysian people. Read the rest of this entry »
The victims of RM50 billion 1MDB scandal are the 30 million Malaysians as “corruption is not a victimless crime”
Malaysia and the Malaysian Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should be playing a leading role in the historic Anti-Corruption Summit in London today hosted by the United Kingdom Government, as this is the second important global anti-corruption conference held after the 16th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC) in Putrajaya last September with the theme of “Ending Impunity: People, Integrity and Action”.
Unfortunately Najib dodged and ducked the 16th IACC which was supposed to be the high-water mark of his six-year anti-corruption campaign and show-case him as one of the exemplary global leaders spearheading a transformation programme with anti-corruption as one of its core objectives.
When Najib’s keynote address for the conference hosted by the Malaysian government was cancelled at the last-minute, and Najib’s photograph and biography quietly and ignominiously removed from the conference website, the 30 million Malaysians had to endure a humiliating opening speech delivered by Transparency International Chair José Ugaz who told about 1,000 delegates from all over the world that the measures taken by the Najib government in connection with the 1MDB financial scandal “are not the actions of a government that is fighting corruption.”
Jose Ugaz said: “No one can be in Malaysia and not be aware of the corruption allegations of recent months and how damaging they are to the country. There is a corruption crisis here.
“We want to see more progress but that cannot happen while there are unanswered questions about the $700m that made its way into the prime minister’s personal bank account.
“There are two questions that need to be answered: Who paid the money and why? Where did it go?
“One man could answer those questions.”
Eight month forward, these two simple questions about Najib’s RM50 billion 1MDB and RM4.2 billion “donation” twin mega scandals (only cited as RM42 billion and RM2.6 billion respectively during the 16th ICAC) are not only no nearer to answer, but have been swarmed by more serious issues about integrity, accountability and good governance. Read the rest of this entry »
Call to Najib to present White Paper on 1MDB in next week’s Parliament and to set aside three days for debate on it, as well as PAC Report on 1MDB
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said yesterday a failed initial public offering (IPO) exercise, as a result of being “attacked”, was the main reason why 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) encountered problems.
He said 1MDB used the debt funding approach to operate its business, which required an IPO to be undertaken in the shortest possible time. The authorities did not foresee that 1MDB would come under relentless “attacks”, which resulted in the IPO exercise could not be carried out, hence the cashflow problems.
Was this the real reason why 1MDB had exploded to become the nation’s first global financial scandal, keeping the nation constantly in the international limelight for massive transborder financial frauds, irregularities and money-laundering?
Or was the Economic Planning Minister, Datuk Sri Abdul Wahid Omar more to the point when he admitted last month that 1MDB model of low capitalization and huge borrowings was unsustainable from the very start.
What was the “original sin” of the 1MDB global financial scandal – the IPO failure, the unsustainable model of low capitalization and huge borrowings or something more fundamental, conceived right from the beginning as a mega global scam that has triggered investigations by several countries on international embezzlement and money-laundering to the tune of some USD11 billion stretching from Singapore to the United States? Read the rest of this entry »