Saturday, October 17, 2015

1MDB Board of Directors minutes prove documents leaked to SR were not doctored; therefore IGP must withdraw arrest warrant against Clare Rewcastle

The Sarawak Report continued its exposé  on the minutes of the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) Board meetings with the disclosure yesterday indicating that the Directors (BOD) were furious with the top management team led by Datuk Shahrol Halmi.

The minutes dated 3rd October, soon after the signing of the 1MDB-Petrosaudi joint venture agreement, provided a damning confirmation that all the earlier documents leaked by the Sarawak Report were completely authentic.

Instead, the minutes proved that the Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Najib Razak and his cohort of Ministers, as well as the current 1MDB President, Arul Kanda’s repeated attempts to taint the leaked information and documents by the whistle-blower website are clear cut lies.  They have obviously alleged that the exposed documents were “doctored” or “tampered” to cover up the multi-billion ringgit scandal.

The minutes revealed that the Board of Directors were furious with the top executives of 1MDB for

  • signing the joint venture agreement in reckless haste, and without any substantive due diligence;
  • the highly suspicious speed of preparation of the valuation report which was prepared by Edward Morse; and
  • most damningly, misappropriating US$700 million to an account unauthorised and unrelated to the joint venture.

The minutes disclosed that the Board “viewed that the formalisation of the joint venture was completed in a very short time which raises questions as to whether adequate control measures, checks and balances were put in place to protect the Company’s interests”.  The Sarawak Report had exposed the fact that the top management of 1MDB met with Petrosaudi for the very first time in London on 23rd September 2009 and signed the joint venture agreement a mere 5 days later on the 28th.

The Board were clearly distrustful of the valuation report prepared by Edward Morse, as it was prepared in less than a week although the Board “was previously informed that such valuation report would only be ready by March 2010”.  The Board was so upset with the report that they demanded a separate “independent valuer to value the assets”.

The Sarawak Report has also published email trails showing Datuk Shahrol Halmi delivering his signed engagement letter to Edward Morse on 29th September 2009, a day after the signing of the joint venture agreement.  Shockingly, the Edward Morse valuation report was produced and dated on the very same day!

The cake of course goes to the fact that the Board “was not consulted on the change of plans to remit US$700 million”.  The Board had understood that the full US$1 billion investment was “to be wired to the joint bank account under the name of the [joint venture company]”.

The Sarawak Report had previously revealed that the US$700 million was transferred to the bank account of Good Star Limited in Switzerland, which was controlled by Low Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low.

With the evidence now clearly showing that the Sarawak Report had published the truth without any form of tampering, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) must withdraw the arrest warrant against Clare Rewcastle, the founder of the whistle-blower website for the frivolous and trumped up charge of a “conspiracy to topple a democratically elected government”.

The failure of the IGP to withdraw their actions will only serve to prove that their actions are “politically motivated”, contrary to their claims of being independent and professional.
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