The cabinet must debunk the United States Department of Justice’s (DOJ) claim that a Malaysian official was involved in extensive money laundering, or go down in history as a “cabinet of kleptocrats”, said Lim Kit Siang.
The DAP parliamentary leader said the cabinet should also state if the person identified only as ‘Malaysian Official 1’ (MO1) in the lawsuits filed last month is Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
The DOJ said ‘Malaysian Official 1’ need not be named in the lawsuits filed to seize more than US$1 billion worth of assets purportedly purchased using funds siphoned from 1MDB.
Ths is because it is not required to meet the purpose of seizing the assets, said the DOJ.
‘Malaysian Official 1’ is described in the DOJ court documents as a high-ranking Malaysian government official who is related to Najib’s stepson Riza Aziz, and who received US$731 million of funds originating from 1MDB.
“Unless the cabinet is going to deny that ‘Malaysian Official 1’ does not refer to Prime Minister Najib, and maintain that Malaysia’s reputation and good name have not been besmirched or stained by the DOJ action, the cabinet must debunk the DOJ complaint about the litany of ‘criminal conduct’ by ‘Malaysian Official 1’ as well as the embezzlement and money laundering of billions of dollars stolen from 1MDB meant for the country’s development.
“The cabinet must not go down in Malaysian history as a cabinet of kleptocrats whose ministers do not mind Malaysia gaining overnight an international infamy and notoriety as a kleptocracy, which has been defined as a rule by a thief or thieves, without taking prompt, immediate, serious and effective action to purge the country of such infamy and notoriety,” Lim said in a statement.
“There has been a national craze in the past three days to catch Pokemons since the arrival of Pokemon Go in Malaysia on Saturday. It would be more useful is there is a national craze to identify and exonerate ‘Malaysian Official 1’,” the Gelang Patah MP added.
On a related matter, DAP’s Klang MP Charles Santiago urged civil society to pressure the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to reopen investigations into 1MDB and its former subsidiary SRC International.
PAC member and DAP publicity secretary Tony Pua yesterday walked out of the meeting, claiming PAC refused to review investigations onto the state-owned firms following the DOJ lawsuits.
Charles said in a statement that the DOJ’s 136-page court filings gives explicit details of alleged money laundering and siphoning of funds from 1MDB.
“It is therefore only fair or logical that Malaysia re-investigates 1MDB. Hasan’s refusal to open new investigations hints to the world that there is something to hide,” said Charles, referring to PAC chairperson Hasan Arifin.