Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad insisted today that a declassified document by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) on the Bumiputera Malaysia Finance Limited (BMF) scandal did not make any direct link to him.
The former prime minister said the document was a normal information paper for the US government back then, rather than a specific report or finding on the 1980s scandal.
“The CIA report itself acknowledged that the Prime Minister then was not in any way, personally or directly linked to that Bumiputra Malaysia Finance (BMF) issue.
“This can be found at page four of that report under the sub-heading ‘Assessing the Political Damage’,” Dr Mahathir said in a statement posted on his blog.
Dr Mahathir said the report also noted his views made on July 1983 calling the BMF’s handling of its financial lending imprudent, and pledging action against the finding although the case was not related to the government.
He also said that the report had acknowledged that the Special Investigation Committee was set up to probe the BMF issue, with the subsequent report released to the public.
“There certainly was no cover up in any way. Whether the necessary authorities brought any party to the Courts is for them to answer.
“The government carried out its duty as properly as it was required to do in the circumstances then,” Dr Mahathir said.
In the report that was part of 13 million pages of declassified documents released online by the CIA last week, the agency said Mahathir’s administration’s involvement was likely as it affected his leadership in Umno and Barisan Nasional then.
Yesterday, Dr Mahathir had told a press conference that the report was an attempt to smear him, claiming it was retaliation by the US over his overt criticism of the country’s policies.
Bank Bumi and its offshore subsidiary BMF issued billions in bad loans to numerous Hong Kong property speculators, including the Carrian Investment Limited (Carrian Group) between 1979 and 1983.
The scandal cost nearly US$1 billion (RM3.57 billion) in two botched loan deals. It also involved the brutal murder of a young Malaysian Bank Bumi auditor.
Source : @ Malay Mail Online