Hornbill Unleashed

January 3, 2017

Sound advice to Najib – don’t hide any more

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s alleged involvement in the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) imbroglio has dragged on for far too long, making people becoming more impatient with the ruling party.

If I may use the word, it is ‘restless’. Yes, the people are getting very restless over the way that the economy is taking a beating as a result of the 1MDB scandal. 1MDB has been headlined in nearly every newspaper and magazine overseas, whereas in Malaysia, people are allegedly still being told one lie after another.

Everywhere I go, whenever I speak to people, whether old friends or new people I meet, everyone is fully aware of the scandal that has plagued the nation for far too long.

If Umno’s own warlords do not unseat him as party president before the next general election, it would do a great injustice to the entire coalition that has ruled the country for the past 60 years.

In fact, by Aug 31 this year, it would be exactly 60 years since Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra as the country’s first prime minister, declared Independence from the British colonialists.

Since his time, Umno has morphed into something totally different from the times and era of the Father of Independence. Its alleged involvement in one scandal after another has shocked the nation, yet Malaysians at large are to be blamed for being laid back and good at criticising others whom they expect to change the world for them.

It takes people like Anwar Ibrahim, Rafizi Ramli, Tian Chua, Teresa Kok, Nurul Izzah Anwar, Lim Guan Eng, Lim Kit Siang and Tony Pua to expose the scandals.

The latest scandal exposed by PKR vice-president Rafizi allegedly involves Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) where US$505million (RM2.26 billion) was spent on purchasing a 37 percent stake in Indonesia’s PT Eagle High Plantations.

The price at which Felda was going to pay for a 37 percent non-controlling stake in the Indonesian plantation, according to PAS deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, raises an alarm, as Indonesian billionaire Peter Sondakh, who owns Rajawali Group, had taken up a 68.6 percent stake in EHP at only US$570 million.

Rafizi claimed he has “given information to assist authorities so that they can commence investigation into whether or not there was interference or instructions from superiors, whether at the board level or from politicians or government to Felda to proceed with the acquisition of Eagle High.”

Felda, on the other hand, plans to purchase a 37 percent non-controlling stake in the Indonesian plantation for US$505.4 million (RM2.26 billion), for 582 rupiah per share.

He also brought up another major issue regarding the highest spending of RM25 billion last year on Felda’s replanting scheme, citing that this exposed the scheme to various risks of abuse and corruption.

Najib’s personal accounts

Recently, Singaporean former BSI banker Yeo Jiawei, who was linked to the 1MDB scandal, was found guilty and sentenced to a 30-month jail term. Yeo, who is also linked to Najib’s close associate, Jho Low, will be facing other charges soon.

All that the Special Affairs Department (Jasa) could say was that Yeo’s jail sentence had nothing to do with either 1MDB president Arul Kanda Kandasamy or Najib himself.

In two other recent cases down south, both Yak Yew Chee and Yvonne Seah are now serving jail terms because of their links to 1MDB. Yak is now serving an 18-week jail term on forgery charges and failure to disclose suspicious transactions, while Yak’s assistant, Yvonne Seah, is in prison for two weeks after she pleaded guilty to similar charges.

Two former executives of Abu Dhabi-based lnternational Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) and its investment arm, Aabar Investments PJS, Khadem Al-Qubaishi and Mohamed Badawy al-Huseiny were also arrested for their links to “fraud and money-laundering on 1MDB”.

How then can Najib, through Jasa’s recent statement, deny that he had any link to the scandal, especially since he is all three – the chairperson of the 1MDB advisory board, the finance minister who came up with the brainchild, as well as the prime minister of Malaysia?

If Low was not involved, why did he not personally appear before the judiciary in the United States to claim the assets confiscated by the US Department of Justice? Why did his family members claim the assets on his behalf? I dare both the flamboyant Low and Najib’s stepson, Riza Aziz, to step foot on the US grounds at this juncture of their lives.

As for Najib, who claimed that RM2.6 billion that went into his personal accounts was donated by an unnamed generous Arab prince, why did he apply to intervene in the ex-parte lawsuit filed by Zaid Ibrahim to compel AmBank Islamic Berhad to disclose the details of how RM2.6 billion had been deposited into five accounts which are allegedly his?

Zaid did the right thing to pursue this matter, but hopefully, the court will uphold justice and rule in public interest. Like Zaid, we, too, want to know where the money came from and how it ended up in one man’s personal accounts, especially since the US Department of Justice had alleged that the money came from 1MDB.

It is not only RM2.6 billion, but another RM41 million which had allegedly originated from SRC International.

After all, the whole nation and the world is being told that the money was a donation from a generous Arab prince. Is there anything for Najib to hide now?

A question of our future

This year, 2017, Malaysians have yet again to make a decision of whom they would vote for. Would they continue to vote for Barisan Nasional or Pakatan Harapan, which is now flanked by former prime minister, Dr Mahathir Mohamad and his Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia?

Currently, Bersatu only has a small group of supporters, but it is well-received by most Malaysians especially people who are unhappy with Umno. Its Facebook page, which only has 3,215 likes at this juncture, needs to receive a boost from its supporters.

On the question of whether Dr Mahathir or Muhyiddin Yassin would eventually betray Pakatan Harapan, I think they better not betray the people’s trust, especially after the people have given them another chance.

It is better for them to work within the framework of the alternative front, so that the people now have a choice between Barisan Nasional and a stronger competitor than to be cursed for the rest of their lives.

As for Najib, a piece of sound advice to him for 2017 would be to think twice before acting further. To call a general election would be a disaster for both Umno and Barisan Nasional.

When I read about MCA president Liow Tiong Lai going to speak to Najib about allocations for the Chinese school, my only response was, who, in the first place, failed to provide the allocation to the schools when they deserved it? Therefore, Liow should just stop pretending to be a saviour for the Chinese schools.

Even Najib’s harping around the Rohingya issue has become a bane to both international relations and dwindling support within Umno. I asked a Malay gentleman about it, and his response was: “Najib cannot even care for the Temiang Orang Asli in Kelantan, does he even want to interfere into another country’s affairs?”


STEPHEN NG is an ordinary citizen with an avid interest in following political developments in the country since 2008.


 

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3 Comments »

  1. Even some blind, deaf and dumb mufti did not think Najib and Jho Low were the key players behind the 1MDB financial scandals and emblazement. They chose to ignore the fact that money from 1MDB are haram . What fuking hypocrites?

    Comment by Awaken Dayak — January 3, 2017 @ 5:55 PM | Reply

  2. Najib tried to hide his family holiday in Australia using the 1Malaysia jet.
    But his son posted the pictures on instagram and now everyone knows about it.

    Comment by Fazli — January 3, 2017 @ 2:49 PM | Reply

  3. BN sold 36 times more land and yet received less money than the present state government, this is the change from the CAT administration that benefited Penangites!
    ============

    Press Statement By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng In Komtar, George Town On 2.1.2017.

    Penang Would Have Recorded RM1,074 Million In Accumulated Surplus Since 2008 If RM500 Million Had Not Been Allocated For The Public & Affordable Housing Fund Out Of The RM658 Million In Land Sales.
    Penang would have recorded RM1,074 million in accumulated surplus since 2008 if RM500 million had not been allocated for the Public & Affordable Housing Fund. This RM500 million Public & Affordable Housing Fund was taken out of the RM658 million in land sales by the state government, clearly showing that land sales was not the reason for the annual surpluses of the state government, which amounted to RM574 million since 2008.
    The Penang state government is proud of its sterling achievement of recording annual surpluses consistently and at the same time reduced its state debts by 90% since 2008. This singular success of annual budget surpluses coupled with low debt is a result of upholding CAT governance of competency, accountability and transparency.
    These annual budget surpluses is the reason why the state government is able to afford and repeats our offer to lend the Federal government RM50 million to help them keep their 2016 promise to give RM50 million for Chinese primary schools. Is the Federal government so “poor” that for the second year running, it can not even find RM50 million development funds promised for Chinese primary schools last year. Something is very wrong and shameful if the Federal government cannot even find RM50 million or 0.02% out of the entire RM261 billion 2017 budget.
    Since 2008, Penang has recorded accumulated budget surpluses of RM574 million over the last 8 years, which is more than what BN achieved over the last 50 years they ruled Penang from 1957-2007 of RM373 million. Whilst our political opponents do not deny that we performed better in 8 years than they did in 50 years, they claimed that these surpluses are achieved by land sales.
    The Penang state government received a total revenue of RM4,947 million since 2008. Land sales revenue since 2008 amounted to RM658 million or 13% of the total revenue of RM4,947 million. Out of the land sales revenue of RM658 million, the state government had allocated RM500 million for the Public and Affordable Housing Fund to build low cost, low-medium cost and houses below RM300,000/-.
    In other words, since 2008 only RM158 million was available as contribution towards accumulated surplus of RM574 million, and towards establishing a welfare state where over RM400 million has been paid out as cash payments to 1.6 million Penangites and schools. Or hundreds of millions of ringgit for development purposes to build public infrastructure.
    The previous government had also conducted land sales on a much larger scale selling 3,661 acres compared to only 106.1 acres under the present state government. And yet the present state government brought in a higher sum of RM1.1102 billion from the sale of 106.1 acres of land due to our open competitive tender system.
    Compared to the different system of selling 3,661 acres by the previous BN state government that only obtained a lesser amount of RM1.0586 billion, such as the sale of reclaimed land in Tanjung Pinang at only RM1 per square feet. BN sold 36 times more land and yet received less money than the present state government, this is the change from the CAT administration that benefited Penangites!

    Comment by jk han — January 3, 2017 @ 12:07 PM | Reply


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