Hornbill Unleashed

July 26, 2016

RM30b added to rail project to pay off 1MDB debts, alleges Sarawak Report

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

Whistleblower website Sarawak Report has accused Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s administration of colluding with main contractor China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) to hike up the cost of the double-track East Coast Rail Project (ECRP) from RM30 billion to RM60 billion to secretly pay off 1MDB debts.

“The PM’s ‘cunning plan’ is to get the government to agree to inflate the actual cost of the East Coast Rail Project from only RM30 billion to RM60 billion, all to be borrowed from the Chinese government, in order to disguise the payment of 1MDB’s (and financier Jho Low’s) company debts,” said the website in an e-mail communique.

Citing a whistleblower who allegedly provided copies of internal CCCC documents which detailed the supposed plan, Sarawak Report claimed that the government is set to approve the award of the contract to the firm, but with “a differential” of RM30 billion on top of the initial estimate.

The extra RM30 billion would be allegedly used to pay off 1MDB debts after the proposed project is to be approved at an inflated RM60 billion by the cabinet tomorrow. (more…)

Hell, Heaven, Priest, Politician

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

[R]eligion has an “autoimmune disease”, a critical flaw … that leads to its misuse…. The disease’s two main symptoms are “God intoxication”… and “God manipulation”.

From ‘Religion’, Brook Wilensky-Lansford’s review of “Putting God Second: How to Save Religion from Itself”, The New York Time Book Review.

Malaysians watching with bewilderment and dismay as politicians and evangelists expound the superiority of their religion and promise milk, honey and paradise for their followers, and the fires of hell for those who do not belong, shouldn’t be surprised.

The antics of these fire and brimstone practitioners follow a well trodden pattern going back hundreds, if not thousands of years.

Any basic course on religion run not by graduates from religious institutions but by reputable scholars would teach about the history of the estimated 6,000 religions of the world, the differences, commonalities and patterns, and associations with cultural and ecological features, especially political. (more…)

‘Grand larceny in 1MDB’

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

The might of the most powerful nation in the world has been brought to bear to investigate, uncover and institute legal proceedings to forfeit assets purchased through money stolen from proceeds of bonds sales by 1MDB.

The combined efforts of three US agencies, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), with the assistance of law enforcement agencies in other countries, have produced the most complete, holistic picture of the great fraud perpetrated by Jho Low and his co-conspirators to defraud the people of Malaysia of billions of ringgit ultimately belonging to them.

The 136-page, 513-paragraph ‘Verified Complaint for Forfeiture in Rem’ is a tour de force. The people of Malaysia, suffering under a state of powerlessness and helplessness, owe an immeasurable debt to the sterling work carried out by truly independent institutions in the United States.

As a long-time critic of US domestic and foreign policies, I pay tribute to their selfless work in exposing the greatest robbery in modern times; what is the Great Train Robbery of the 1960s compared to 1MDB! (more…)

How to steal billions

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

From 2009 to at least 2013, private individuals were allegedly able to siphon off more than US$3.5 billion from the wealth fund of Malaysia and go on a high-end luxury shopping spree in several countries including the United States, the United Kingdom and Switzerland for property, museum-quality art and a private jet.

Gatekeepers such as auction houses, the real estate industry, lawyers and banks played supporting roles (sometimes unwittingly) in the alleged wrongdoing.

The perpetrators used shell companies, where the real names of the ultimate owners were obscured. Ironically, in a plot twist made in Hollywood, they even financed a film, ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, about living high off financial fraud.

To ensure this lurid tale isn’t solely remembered for its audacity and scale, we need to take active steps to close the obvious loopholes in the US legal framework and compliance practices, and shore up the international financial system that has allowed this brazen money laundering to happen. (more…)

Maria Chin: No Bersih 5 rally yet

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

Maria Chin Abdullah says Bersih 2.0 has yet to decide if it will organise a Bersih 5 rally. ― Picture by Yusof Mat IsaBersih 2.0 has yet to decide if it will organise a Bersih 5 rally, Maria Chin Abdullah said today.

The head of the electoral reform group said discussions were still ongoing, after Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said yesterday that it can proceed with a street demonstration as long as it follows the law and does not call for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s resignation.

“There’s no Bersih 5 yet. We haven’t called a rally. We’re still discussing,” Chin toldMalay Mail Online.

Sungai Besar Umno leader Datuk Jamal Yunos has said that another Red Shirt rally will be held if the Bersih 5 demonstration goes on.

Chin said last Friday that the fifth installment of Bersih 2.0’s street protests may be organised after the US Department of Justice filed a lawsuit seeking to recover more than US$1 billion (RM4.06 billion) in assets bought with money allegedly embezzled from state investment firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

The overnight Bersih 4 protest held last August saw tens of thousands of protesters flooding the streets in the capital city.


BOO SU-LYN


1MDB suit: PM Najib and Harakahdaily still negotiating over possible settlement

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Datuk Seri Najib Razak (pictured) and Harakahdaily are still negotiating on possible settlement of the defamation suit he had filed against the PAS mouthpiece over 1Malaysia Development Berhad. — File picNajib Razak and Harakahdaily are still negotiating on possible settlement of the defamation suit filed by the former against the PAS mouthpiece over 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

The Prime Minister’s lawyer Datuk Mohd Hafarizam Harun told reporters today that both parties needed time to finalise the terms of the settlement.

He said Court of Appeal President Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif had set Sept 26 for case management for the two sides to update the court on the matter.

Meanwhile, Lawyer Wan Rohimi Wan Daud who represented Harakahdaily told reporters that his client was open to more discussion for possible settlement. (more…)

Umno Youth lodges report on alleged plot to topple PM

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Abu Kassim MohamedUmno Youth today lodged a police report against the former heads of two institutions as well as the outgoing head of another for allegedly trying to topple Prime Minister Najib Razak.

The wing’s vice-chief, Khairul Azwan Harun, lodged the report at the Dang Wangi police headquarters against former Bank Negara Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz, former Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail and outgoing Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Chief Abu Kassim Mohamed.

“I have reason to believe that these individuals had on their own, or jointly, taken part in a conspiracy to topple Najib and the Malaysian Government, which was legally elected,” stated Khairul in the report cited by FMT.

The methods the three had allegedly used, added Khairul, included providing confidential information to US agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). (more…)

Snap poll drags all into personal mess?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng must keep his personal problems personal and not drag the entire party, state and opposition to prove a point, says MCA Penang State Liaison Committee Secretary Dr Tan Chuan Hong.

“Lim should resolve his corruption charges through judicial proceedings and not a meaningless snap polls.

“His corruption charges are his personal problem, why waste manpower and money to test the public support for Penang’s Pakatan Harapan coalition following the outbreak of corruption scandal?” asks Tan.

He further says that Lim must realise that no matter how the people vote, the judicial outcome on his case does not depend on the result of the elections.

“We are well aware that even if DAP wins big in the state election, the results will not determine the outcome of the judicial case or imply that LGE is innocent.  These are two different matters, LGE should not mix both together. (more…)

Group claims police officer harassed people who wanted to take part in Sarawak Day celebration

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

S4S civil movement leader Peter John Jaban (centre) with lawyer Dominique Ng Kim Ho and Karen Shepherd before submitting an official complaint with the Sarawak State police, July 26, 2016. ― Picture by Sulok TawieA civil rights group today lodged a police report against Serian district police chief Deputy Superintendent Chung Aik Peng for allegedly harassing people who wanted to take part in a Sarawak Day celebration last week.

Sarawak For Sarawakians (S4S) claimed that many people who were present at the celebration had complained of being harassed and intimidated by Chung.

“We want the state police to initiate  immediate investigation against him so that appropriate action can be taken,” S4S spokesperson Karen Shepherd told reporters before submitting an official complaint with the Sarawak Police Commissioner Datuk Mazlan Mansor.

Shepherd, who later accompanied her husband and S4S leader Peter John Jaban and S4S member Alim Mideh to the police headquarters, said the complaint listed down numerous incidents of harassment, threats and intimidation against people who intended to take part in the celebration at the Taman Komuniti in Serian on July 22. (more…)

Rafizi cries foul over RM470m contract to inexperienced firm

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli has accused the government of handing a RM740 million contract through direct negotiation to ailing TH Heavy Engineering Bhd (THHE).

He alleged this was a bid to cover up Lembaga Tabung Haji’s mistake of investing in THHE, and would come at the expense of national security as the contract required THHE to provide the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) with three offshore patrol vessels (OPV).

He claimed this is despite THHE having no experience in the field,

“(Finance Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s) move to use an OPV supply contract to cover up Lembaga Tabung Haji’s weaknesses in investing in THHE and becoming exposed to losses up to RM554 million is desperate and very irresponsible. (more…)

Trafficking: Malaysia prepared to collaborate with US

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

zahid-hamidi_Trafficking_human_600Malaysia is prepared to collaborate with the United States in the field of capacity building which touches on all aspects of prosecution and convictions, including identifying individuals with potential to become victims of labour exploitation and forced labour.

The matter was conveyed by Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to the US Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, Susan Coppedge, during their meeting at Perdana Putra here today.

Zahid, who is also home minister, said he had also explained the efforts undertaken by Malaysia in combating human trafficking, without neglecting the victims’ well-being, in line with international practice.

“The Malaysian Government’s initiatives must get full support from various quarters, including non-governmental organisations (NGO). (more…)

PM: Putrajaya won’t apologise for security laws

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Datuk Seri Najib Razak stresses that controversial laws such as the National Security Council Act are needed to safeguard the country's security. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa.Controversial laws such as the National Security Council (NSC) Act were introduced to ensure Malaysians’ safety, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today.

Najib acknowledged that such legislation was not universally accepted, but stressed that they were needed to safeguard the country’s security.

“We were criticised by some quarters for passing some of these laws. But my government will never apologise for placing the safety and security of the Malaysian people first.

“These laws were necessary, and other countries has since been following our lead,” he said during his speech at the Asean Police (Aseanapol) conference today.

Najib added that laws such as the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act [Sosma] and the Special Measures against Terrorism in Foreign Countries Act were vital in protecting against and combating the growing threat of terror in the region. (more…)

Pro-Umno portal: Malaysian Official 1 is Najib, but…

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

It is clear that “Malaysian Official 1″ mentioned in the US Department of Justice civil (DOJ) suits referred to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, said a pro-Umno portal.

However, MyKMU.net asked whether all the issues mentioned in the documents were true.

“DOJ has to prove it in court. Unfortunately, there is a big possibility this will not happen because DOJ is not suing Najib.

“Since they are not suing Najib, therefore whatever references made to MO1 (Malaysian Official 1) need not be proven in court,” it added.

The portal also considered it a “great mystery” that DOJ linked ‘MO1′ to the case when it did not intend to seize any of this official’s assets. (more…)

Despite lack of royal assent, NSC Act comes into force in August

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Despite the lack of royal assent from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and calls from the Conference of Rulers for the law to be referred back to the legislature for amendments, the BN-led government has decided to go ahead with gazetting the National Security Council Act 2016 into force come Aug 1.

“In exercise of the powers conferred by subsection 1(2) of the National Security Council Act 2016 (Act 776), the prime minister appoints Aug 1, 2016 as the date on which the Act comes into operation,” read the notice on the Federal Gazette displayed on the Attorney-General’s Chambers’ website.

The notice was signed by Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, the premier credited with being the architect of the Act.

From Aug 1, Najib as prime minister can declare any area he so chooses as a security area which will suspend civil liberties and allow for special police powers to be administered by the NSC that he appoints. (more…)

Dr M is the one who has been harassing PM, says Nazri

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

nazri1It is not Prime Minister Najib Razak that has been harassing former Premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad and those connected to him.

“It’s the other way around,” said Umno Supreme Council member Nazri Aziz.

Speaking to FMT, he said for the past one and a half years, Mahathir has relentlessly gone after Najib and the latter’s family, to the point that the 91-year-old even went against his own words by seeking the assistance of foreign media.

“I remember when he (Mahathir) was a prime minister. He was very much against the foreign press because at the time they were attacking him.

“He also chastised them for meddling in the internal affairs of Malaysia. (more…)

PKR refutes DAP, insists opposition parties were consulted on previous by-elections

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

PKR communications director Fahmi Fadzil pointed out that calling for a by-election was entirely different than DAP’s call for a statewide snap election in Penang. — Picture by Saw Siow FengPKR has refuted DAP’s claim that it unilaterally made decisions about previous by-elections, and has insisted that opposition parties were consulted in the past.

PKR communications director Fahmi Fadzil said that DAP’s claim was also “inaccurate” as the party’s previous decisions involved by-elections and seats in which PKR was the incumbent.

He pointed out that calling for a by-election was entirely different than DAP’s call for a statewide snap election in Penang.

“First and foremost, there is a huge difference between a single-seat by-election and a state-wide one: the former involves a single seat held by one political party, while the latter involves ― as in the case of Penang ― 40 seats which has a wider impact affecting more than one political party. (more…)

Friends, family and I are being harassed, says Dr Mahathir

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has claimed that he, along with his friends and family, are being ‘harassed’ in order to stop him from affecting the image of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

“I am being harassed at the moment. A lot of things are being done to make life very uncomfortable for me and my family and my friends.

“All kinds of things have been done in order to stop me from doing anything that may affect the image of Najib,” Mahathir said at a press conference in Jakarta, Indonesia, yesterday, as reported by Singapore daily The Straits Times.

Mahathir, who had previously warned his detractors against criticising the country when abroad, was in Jakarta to give a lecture titled ‘Building Economic Independence and Clean Government’ to university students. (more…)

Snap polls is to keep Lim dynasty going?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Lim Hui Ying. Who? But remember the name, for time will come when that name will turn heads, or made to turn heads.

She is Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng’s sister, and probably the only one left to keep up the Lim dynasty of DAP, so the murmurs in DAP say.

It has been reported that “the Penang snap polls will be announced when it will be announced” but the wind is blowing hard to making it happen, and Guan Eng is huffing and puffing.

A meeting of the DAP state assemblymen in Penang to discuss the snap polls also did not seem to be in Guan Eng’s favour, but in politics, even if you have been fighting at the back, you smile at the front.

Meetings after meetings are being held to convince DAP’s main opposition ally PKR to agree. PKR has much reservations, for popularity for the opposition pact and the party, especially from Malay voters is at an all time low. (more…)

Mahathir: Why name others, but not M’sian Official 1?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

MahathirDr Mahathir Mohamad said he was puzzled as to why US prosecutors named several individuals over funds allegedly misappropriated from 1MDB but yet refused to reveal the identity of “Malaysian Official 1” mentioned in their report.

In his latest blog posting, Mahathir pointed out that the US Department of Justice (DoJ) was “happy to write down the names of the other culprits”, namely Riza Aziz, who is Prime Minister Najib Razak’s stepson, Low Taek Jho (better known as Jho Low), and Abu Dhabi government officials Khadem al-Qubaisi and Mohamed Ahmed Badawy Al-Husseiny.

“If it is because this is not at the stage of making criminal charges, then no names should be named,” the former prime minister said.

Mahathir had three days ago claimed everyone knew that “Malaysian Official 1” was Najib. (more…)

No to Shariah law in pluralistic Sabah, state’s Christians say

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Datuk Jerry Dusing said that Sabah has always enjoyed a harmonious community of diverse backgrounds without religious tensions, but now live in fear of having their religious materials seized. — Picture by Yusof Mat IsaSabahan Christians are against the imposition of Shariah law in the state and want freedom of religion to be restored, said Sabah Council of Churches president Reverend Datuk Jerry Dusing.

The Sidang Injil Borneo church leader said that Sabahans once had religious freedom, but are now haunted by incidents such as the ban on the non-Muslim use of “Allah”, seizure of their religious materials, and the latest proposal to elevate Shariah law in the country.

“We will guard our shores from efforts by any quarters to elevate Shariah law in this country, which is incompatible to the Malaysian Agreement 1963.

“Further, the Shariah law simply will not work in Sabah which is inherently pluralistic in nature. We will guard our shores from injustice, unfairness and extremism,” he said in his speech during a book launch here recently. (more…)

Najib defends Tabung Haji’s land purchase in TRX

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

najib_tabung-haji_new_600Najib Razak hit back at those who had previously politicised Tabung Haji’s (TH) land purchase in the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX).

At the launch of the TH Foundation today, Najib said the land bought by TH at a value of RM1,800 per sq ft over a year ago was now worth RM2,200 per sq ft.

“When TH bought the land, it became an issue.”

However, Najib said TH was now receiving offers to the tune of RM2,200 per sq ft and this meant it was a profitable venture.

“The problem is that the purchase was politicised by some parties.” (more…)

How did Suasa Airline flight take off without permits?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

sim-tze-tzin_sprm_suasa_600A PKR lawmaker today took the Transport Ministry, Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) to task over the unlicensed flight of Suasa Airline.

Bayan Baru MP Sim Tze Tzin also asked the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to launch an investigation into the matter to see whether there was bribery involved in allowing the flight.

He dubbed the incident of Suasa Airline flying without an Air Service Permit (ASP) from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) to Langkawi last Friday as “shocking and worrying”.

“When the airline flew its aircraft without a permit, it showed that the country’s air space was compromised. It shows there is a huge loophole in airport security. (more…)

Suasa’s unlicensed flight – bribery?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The incident of Suasa Airline flying without Air Service Permit (ASP) from KLIA to Langkawi is totally shocking and worrying; how possibly can the Transport Ministry, Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and the airport management be so imprudent that an unlicensed aircraft was allowed to enter an airport and fly to another place?

This incident is extremely serious. We wonder what has happened to our country? An airline can fly its aircraft without permit, and while the US government has filed a court case against misappropriation of our government-founded company’s assets, our authorities seem unperturbed – is Malaysia currently in the state of anarchy?

CEO of Malaysia Airlines Christoph Müller has said that some staff members of the company were sleeping during office hours, did the same thing happen in Transport Ministry, DCA and Malaysia Airports Holdings (MAHB)? (more…)

IGP: Revealing details of 1MDB probe might send ‘people into hiding’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

IGP Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar stressed that the authorities are doing whatever is necessary to ensure that the law takes it course. ― Picture by Choo Choy MayThe police do not want to reveal explicit details on their 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) probe as it might send alleged suspects into hiding, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said today.

The Inspector General of Police (IGP) stressed that the authorities are doing whatever is necessary to ensure that the law takes it course.

“Well I don’t want to say it here because if I start saying people will go into hiding. So we will do all necessary,” he told reporters during a press conference today after attending the Asean Police (Aseanapol) conference here today.

The police chief however refused to comment if one of the suspects being investigated is businessman Low Taek Jho, who has been also named in the recent US Department of Justice civil lawsuit.

“I’m not saying that yet. Later you will know,” Khalid told reporters. (more…)

Najib: Stop baseless accusations against Tabung Haji

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The TRX land acquisition by Tabung Haji came under heavy criticism from opposition leaders, who alleged it was a bailout of 1MDB. ― Picture by Yusof Mat IsaLembaga Tabung Haji (LTH) is the victim of false allegations that are harmful both to the fund and the Muslim pilgrims who are its contributors, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Citing the purchase of 0.66 hectare land at Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) from 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) for RM188.5 million, he said the deal was an example of how the board’s investments are well planned and appropriate.

“When LTH bought the land last year, it was made into an issue. But today, I was informed that someone is willing to pay RM2,200 per square foot for that land.

“That is already a profit if LTH were to sell that piece of land,” he said at the LTH Hari Raya luncheon at the Tabung Haji Hotel here. (more…)

DOJ lawsuit: Govt not shielding anyone, says Salleh

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak (pictured) said the government would not protect anyone or withhold information relating to the civil suit filed by the United States Department of Justice. — File picThe government is not protecting anyone or hiding information relating to the civil suit filed by the United States Department of Justice to seize assets alleged to have been bought with money siphoned from 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak said the government was transparent in any investigation such as conducted by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and the US’ Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“We are not hiding anything. In fact, we will ensure that anyone who breaks the law will face appropriate action. This shows the government’s transparency.

“It also sets aside the assumption that we are protecting certain parties,” he told reporters after launching Goxip.com, a website and platform for local and international fashion, here today. (more…)

East Coast Rail project wasn’t discussed in Cabinet, works minister says

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof denied a claim that Putrajaya wanted to double the cost of the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) project. — File picWorks Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof denied todaySarawak Report’s claim that Putrajaya wants to double the cost of the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) project from RM30 billion to RM60 billion in order to pay off 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) debts.

In a report today, the London-based whistleblower site, also citing several documents, claimed that the ECRL project would be awarded to the Chinese state-owned company China Communications Construction Company.

“I don’t give a damn [about] Sarawak Report,” Fadillah told Malay Mail Online.

“It was never discussed in Cabinet,” he added. (more…)

‘RM740m direct contracts to bail out TH subsidiary’

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

rafizi-najib-maicciContracts worth RM740 million were awarded in direct-negotiations to TH Heavy Engineering Berhad (THHE) by Prime Minister Najib Razak, says Rafizi Ramli.

The PKR secretary-general said that he also possessed documents supporting his allegations pertaining to the company which is partly-owned by the pilgrim’s fund Tabung Haji.

“I have documents which clearly confirm the awarding of contracts through direct negotiations of RM740 million to THHE which I will reveal further every day this week,” the Pandan MP said in a statement today.

Rafizi called the alleged awarding of the contracts by Najib as an attempt to bail out the engineering company, which he said was close to bankruptcy. (more…)

Dr M: How will DOJ charge ‘M’sian Official 1’ without naming him?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Dr Mahathir Mohamad has reiterated his call for the US Department of Justice to name the “Malaysian Official 1” mentioned in its court filings regarding the alleged abuse of 1MDB funds.

The former premier said if the superpower truly believed in the eradication of corruption and money laundering which involved the US, they should not be shy about naming names and letting due process take place.

“Stealing money is a crime. Merely seizing the stolen money does not nullify the crime. The only logical sequence to the seizure of stolen money is the criminal charge against the thieves.

“How is the DOJ going to charge Malaysian Official 1 without naming him?” he asked.

Without mincing words as always, Mahathir said foreign intervention was required to bring about justice when the “thief is in charge of the police and the prosecuting agency” at home. (more…)

Royal commission on 1MDB not necessary, minister says

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani says the investigations on 1MDB by local authorities and agencies were already ‘extensive’, covering both the domestic and international aspect of the affair. — Reuters picFinance Minister II Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani dismissed today calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to examine allegations of financial misconduct at 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), saying it would be superfluous.

He added that the investigations on the state-owned investment firm by local authorities and agencies were already “extensive”, covering both the domestic and international aspect of the affair.

“Is it really necessary? When you have all the things made public? I think this is the most extensive coverage of any issue in this country,” the minister told a press conference here.

“We are not only talking about running it (1MDB) for one month but across three or four years.. I think across the world everybody has already covered (the investigation)”. (more…)

TH says not directly involved in 1MDB sponsorship

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Johan-Abdullah_haji_600The question of whether or not those sponsored by 1MDB for pilgrimage to Mecca would have to wait in line for their turn does not arise.

Lembaga Tabung Haji (LTH) Group Managing Director Johan Abdullah said this while thanking embattled state investment firm 1MDB for providing over RM10 million to sponsor 1,100 individuals for the Hajj pilgrimage this year.

“The question of them having to queue or not does not arise as we want to focus on giving the opportunity to mosque committee members and imam,” he said.

He was speaking to reporters after the launch of TH Foundation in Kelana Jaya today by Prime Minister Najib Razak.

“They (the recipients) were very thankful (for the sponsorship) as without it, even if they save for years, they may not have the chance to perform their Hajj,” added Johan. (more…)

Azmin: No snap polls in Selangor

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

azminThe Selangor government has denied the possibility of snap polls being held in the state.

This was according to Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali, who also stated that no discussions had been held on the matter.

“There will be no snap polls in Selangor, there are no discussions as well,” Azmin told reporters in Taman Melawati here today.

Azmin’s statement contradicts a report in Nanyang Siang Pau claiming that the leaders of the three component parties in Pakatan Harapan have agreed to hold snap elections in Selangor and Penang.

Azmin, who is also PKR deputy president, however, said PKR leaders will hold a meeting tonight on matters concerning DAP.

“No, tonight’s meeting will not have discussions on snap polls,” he said.

It was previously reported that DAP was pushing for an early election in Penang.

However, according to Nanyang Siang Pau, sources have said that Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) was unhappy with PKR for continuously cooperating with PAS after the demise of Pakatan Rakyat.


Adam Abu Bakar


July 25, 2016

Is 1MDB Malaysia’s defining moment?

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

The US government has accused Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak of having received hundreds of millions of US dollars into his personal banking accounts from money stolen from 1MDB. Najib has not refuted the allegation.

The US government has also accused officials and associates of 1MDB of having stolen more than US$3.5 billion from 1MDB, to which Najib has also failed to deny.

What is most devastating to the prime minister personally is that among the millions of such stolen money in his banking account is the famous US$681 million which he claimed to be a donation from the Saudi royal family.

Equally devastating personally to Najib is the fact that 1MDB is his brainchild, a sovereign wealth fund autocratically controlled by the prime minister himself that he vowed would uplift the economy of his people. (more…)

Business as usual for Najib amid 1MDB allegations

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

Senior officials in Malaysia have closed ranks around Najib. He has denied all wrongdoing. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa The day US prosecutors alleged massive fraud at a Malaysian state fund, it was business as usual thousands of miles away for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak. Attending an evening feast for thousands of civil servants, he shook hands and posed for selfies.

The next day he showed up at the exhibition of a new sedan by the country’s top carmaker and held a national development-planning meeting. He only briefly addressed the US news, saying the Department of Justice action should be allowed to run its course.

The message was clear: The premier is focused on matters at home, especially the economy, as he seeks to preserve support among his ruling party’s base of ethnic Malays, many of them in rural areas. One of his pit stops on Thursday was a speech to employees of a government agency that is tasked with helping thousands of smallholder farmers.

Having already weathered a year of scandals over multi million dollar political donations, it would take a major development domestically to put the premier at risk of losing his job in the near term. That’s even as the US civil suits seek to seize more than US$1 billion (RM4.09 billion) in assets that prosecutors allege was siphoned from troubled state fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd, whose advisory board Najib chaired until recently. Najib has denied any wrongdoing. (more…)

Najib wants those named by DoJ to clear their names

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

najib_doj_600The government wants those named in the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) civil lawsuits to clear their names to show that there has been no misuse of public funds as reported, said Najib Razak.

The prime minister said the government took a serious view of the DoJ report and was prepared to extend full cooperation to all quarters in the investigation.

“Let’s not get carried away with the matter. Leave it to the judicial process for we believe that sooner or later the truth will prevail,” he said at the presentation of offer letters for the performance of the haj at the Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Mosque here today.

A total of 1,100 people comprising imams, village chiefs and chairmen of village development and security committees, received the letters from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad Foundation. (more…)

US$3.5 billion breakdown for simple folk

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

According to the civil lawsuit filed by the US Department of Justice to seize 1MDB assets, it was alleged that between 2009 and 2015, more than US$3.5 billion in funds belonging to 1MDB was misappropriated.

As of today, US$3.5 billion equals to RM14.3 billion.

What is RM14.3 billion? Let us break it down to what we common people can understand:

Let’s say one MyVi-advanced with all specs – the most expensive MyVi – is RM58,000.
RM14.3 billion means about 246,551 units of MyVi.

Let’s say a low cost house, 800 sq ft with three rooms in Kuala Lumpur costs RM150,000.
RM14.3 billion means more than 95,333 of such houses. (more…)

Khairy: Probe those responsible if criminal element proven in US DOJ lawsuits

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin advised Malaysians to let the due processes take place and refrain from speculating on the affair. — file picture Malaysia’s enforcement agencies must take immediate action if the US Department of Justice succeeds to prove in court the allegations of financial misappropriation from state-owned 1 Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin said today.

In the meantime, he advised Malaysians to let the due processes take place and refrain from speculating on the affair.

“We take cognisance that this case has yet to be proven and that it should be taken to court. The civil case will determine if the assets are procured illegally [as claimed] and we hope the process will be allowed to take place.

“We do not want any parties to presume anyone as guilty yet because [the suit] was only an investigation, so we let the court process to take place,” Khairy told reporters after chairing the wing’s executive councillor meeting here.

“Although we do not want to preempt or make any assumptions, it is important for local enforcement agencies to launch an investigation should it be true that there was embezzlement,” he added.


SYED JAYMAL ZAHIID


C4: Don’t put the lid on 1MDB investigations

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Cynthia-GabrielThe Center to Combat Corruption & Cronyism (C4) has urged the Attorney-General (AG) to urgently concede to requests for Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) by countries investigating the 1MDB Scandal.

“We remind him that he must work for public interest, as he’s paid by taxpayers,” said the NGO’s Founder Director Cynthia Gabriel in a statement.

C4 Center, elsewhere, called for the following:

Firstly, the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) should open fresh investigations into the USD681 million in Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s account.

“The US Department of Justice (DoJ) has revealed that the USD 681 million in Najib’s private bank accounts was from 1MDB monies,” noted Gabriel. (more…)

1MDB audit might not be under OSA if interim report not leaked, says Auditor-General

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Ambrin testifyied as a prosecution witness in Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli’s OSA trial today. — Picture by Choo Choy May The Auditor-General’s report on 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) might not be classified under the Official Secrets Act (OSA) if the initial interim report was not leaked, Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang said today.

Ambrin, who was testifying as a prosecution witness in Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli’s OSA trial, said that the interim audit report, released in July 2015, was classified as “limited”, and the final report, released in March 2016, would be under the same category if not for “information leaks.”

“Maybe if the interim report was not leaked, we would not have classified this under OSA,” Ambrin said.

He also stressed that it was standard practice for the audit department to classify all reports tabled to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) as “limited.” (more…)

Who are 1MDB Officers 1, 2, 3 and the others in US list?

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

KiniGuide In the US Department of Justice’s recent filings related to the 1MDB scandal, among the relevant individuals named in the suit are ‘1MDB Officer 1’, ‘1MDB Officer 2’, and ‘1MDB Officer 3’.

Like the much-reported ‘Malaysian Official 1’ in the document, the names of these other 1MDB officers are also concealed throughout the document.

And yet, there are tantalising clues throughout the 136 pages of the DOJ document.

Thus far, little attention has been given to the identities of these 1MDB officers.

In this instalment of KiniGuide, we look back at the history of the 1MDB scandal in an attempt to shed some light on this mystery, as well as on several others who have not been identified by name in the court filings. (more…)

Name and shame Najib, Dr M tells foreign nations

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on other nations, including the United States and Australia, to name and shame Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak over the 1MDB scandal.

“I know most foreign countries are rather reluctant to come out straight and say that the prime minister is the one who is guilty of all of these things,” he told ABC in an interview.

Though the US Department of Justice civil suits in relation to alleged misappropriated 1MDB funds did not mention Najib, it made repeated references to one ‘Malaysian Official 1’.

Speculation is rife that based on the information provided in the suits, ‘Malaysian Official 1’ is the prime minister, who was the 1MDB board of advisers chairperson. (more…)

Govt wants those identified in US DOJ lawsuits to clear their names, Najib says

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The PM said the government was prepared to extend its full cooperation to all quarters in the investigation. — Reuters picThe government wants those named in the United States Department of Justice civil lawsuits to clear their names to show that there was no misuse of public funds as reported, said Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

The prime minister said the government took a serious view of the DOJ report and was prepared to extend full cooperation to all quarters in the investigation.

“Let’s not get carried away with the matter. Leave it to the judicial process for we believe that sooner or later the truth will prevail,” he said at the presentation of offer letters for the performance of the Haj at the Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Mosque here, today.

A total of 1,100 people comprising imams, village chiefs and chairmen of village development and security committees, received the letters from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad Foundation. (more…)

Report: Umno leaders exit expected after DOJ 1MDB crackdown

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

A former senior editor has reportedly predicted an imminent departure of several top Umno leaders to the opposition, after the US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) lawsuit to seize billions in assets allegedly misappropriated from state investment fund 1MDB.

The South China Morning Post today quoted former New Straits Times political editor Firdaus Abdullah claiming that the leaders have initiated discussions on the matter with former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

“Umno is jittery to the core. A few senior leaders have started moves to ‘discuss’ with Dr Mahathir,” Firdaus reportedly said.

“They are top Umno members, cabinet members and leaders of the ruling coalition component parties,” he claimed, without revealing further details.

Mahathir had recently proposed to set up a new political party that would further the Save Malaysia agenda and remove Najib Abdul Razak. (more…)

S’pore to boost money laundering controls amid 1MDB-linked probe

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

MAS-1MDBSingapore’s central bank said it will enhance controls against money laundering and take swift action against banks following damaging findings that financial institutions in the city-state handled money flows linked to Malaysian state fund 1MDB.

“There is no doubt that the recent findings have made a dent in our reputation as a clean and trusted financial centre,” Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said at its annual news conference on Monday.

“MAS is determined to fix the problem, working together with the industry.”

Menon said the central bank will bolster its enforcement, conduct rigorous investigations and take swift action against errant financial institutions.

The comments came after authorities in Singapore announced last week that they had seized S$240 million ($177 million) of assets in an investigation of 1MDB-related fund flows for possible money laundering. (more…)

Singapore to boost money-laundering controls amid 1MDB-linked probe

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Singapore’s central bank said it will enhance controls against money-laundering and take swift action against banks following damaging findings that financial institutions in the city-state handled money flows linked to Malaysian state fund 1MDB.

“There is no doubt that the recent findings have made a dent on our reputation as a clean and trusted financial centre,” Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said at its annual news conference today.

“MAS is determined to fix the problem, working together with the industry.”

Menon said the central bank would bolster its enforcement, conduct rigorous investigations and take swift action against errant financial institutions.

The comments came after authorities in Singapore announced last week that they had seized S$240 million (RM719.5 million) of assets in an investigation of 1MDB-related fund flows for possible money laundering. (more…)

1MDB, money-laundering and a tribunal

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The response of Malaysian government authorities to the civil suits filed by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to seize more than US$1 billion (RM 4.02 billion) in assets allegedly linked to 1MDB has been a huge disappointment.

Faced with suits that allege massive embezzlement of funds and one of the worst money-laundering scams in history, cabinet ministers and the attorney-general are determined to absolve ‘Malaysian Official ‘ of any wrongdoing. They are obsessed with preserving, protecting and perpetuating the prime minister’s position whatever the costs and consequences.

It is not just the US attorney-general that has gone public on this shameful attempt to launder perhaps US 3.5 billion (RM 14.07 billion) from a state investment company established ostensibly for the people’s benefit. Singapore authorities have also seized assets worth S$240 million (RM 717.45 million) in an investigation of 1MDB related fund flows for possible money-laundering.

Switzerland is another international financial hub that has begun to take action. 1MDB’s activities between 2009 and 2013 have now been exposed as utterly fraudulent on a global scale. (more…)

The price of ‘consensus’ decision making

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

How did we, as a nation, arrive where we are today, with many not seeing eye-to-eye with others?

How is it that when racist policies were being implemented during the past few decades, no politicians saw, heard or spoke about them and the consequences that would sooner or later engulf our multi-racial society?

Today, a few politicians are crying over spilt milk upon finding walls having been erected between Malaysians who had lived like brothers and sisters for a long time before independence.

The culprit was and still is the way the government politicians from various parties make decisions. They are proud of this method and proclaim it as showing unity of the multiracial people.

It is called “consensus” and touted as a very mature way since all come to a common understanding. In case there is any disagreement, by consensus they “agree to disagree”. (more…)

Eunuchs with testicles

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

Eunuchs with testiclesIn the days of emperors who ruled over vast empires, servants whose testicles had been cut off were employed by these emperors as their palace guards.

The emperors required men they could trust implicitly to take care of their concubines and mistresses—some emperors had more than a thousand wives.

The emperors could not trust “normal” men to keep their mistresses “chaste” and not go looking for pleasure with the palace guards, so a generation of eunuchs—males who were rendered incapable of sexual acts by mutilation and castration—grew to serve the emperors’ special needs.

The castration was done early and because eunuchs were employed in the inner palace areas, they had the proximity and opportunity to mingle with the emperor, his concubines and key palace advisors. (more…)

No conventional banking in EPF’s ‘Simpanan Shariah’ portfolio

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

epf-shariahThe Employees Provident Fund’s (EPF) fully shariah-compliant investment scheme ‘Simpanan Shariah’ that will kick in next year will exclude conventional banking from its investment portfolio.

Nevertheless, its investment strategy will still be guided by its Strategic Asset Allocation (SAA) model, with the objectives of preserving and enhancing the value of members’ retirement savings, EPF said in a statement.

Implementing a fully shariah-compliant investment scheme is nothing new to the EPF, as it has all this while abided by ethical guidelines and investment policies which prohibited it from investing in sectors that promote gambling, manufacture and distribution of military weapons, production of alcohol as well as promotion and distribution of adult entertainment.

In addition, the EPF does not have any exposure in countries with no diplomatic ties with Malaysia. (more…)

New Labuan customs ruling postponed to November

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 PM

The new ruling requires Labuan-registered vehicle owners to deposit certain percentage of bond before driving out their vehicles to the mainland. — file picture The full enforcement on customs regulations and policy to impose a strict rule on the outflow of Labuan-registered vehicle to the mainland had been postponed to Nov 1.

Confirming this, Labuan Member of Parliament Datuk Rozman Isli said the postponement of the enforcement of the ruling from Aug 1 was decided after taking into consideration various views from Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties, chambers of commerce, community leaders and the people of Labuan.

“The postponement was decided today after our meeting with the Second Finance Minister Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani in Kuala Lumpur,” he told Bernama today.

Rozman said the implementation of the customs ruling would see certain adjustments from its early schedules which hopefully would not burden the Labuan folks and would be discussed in details with the Ministry of Finance and customs officials. (more…)

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