Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Dato’ Seri Najib Razak should stop pulling the wool over the rakyat’s eyes with purported social welfare programmes by 1MDB which are in actual reality, funded by Malaysian taxpayers

It beggars belief that the Prime Minister, Dato’ Seri Najib Razak could still heap praise on 1MDB for “making immense contribution to social welfare programmes”.

He announced that 1MDB Foundation sponsored RM10.4 million for 1,100 pilgrims to go to for pilgrimage this year; recipients of which were present with Najib in a Putrajaya mosque today to receive their offer letters yesterday

The 1MDB Foundation contribution to social welfare is a farce designed with the specific intent to mask the fact that 1MDB has made billions of ringgit of losses, as a result of an international money laundering exercise involving the Prime Minister himself.

If 1MDB had made real profits and subsequently allocated part of these profits to charitable causes, then the efforts by the state-owned company should certainly be applauded.

However, 1MDB which had funded itself entirely by debt by borrowing at its peak, RM55 billion ringgit, never made a sen of cash profits in its entire 6 years of existence. 

This means that 1MDB had effectively paid for its “immense contribution to social welfare programmes” with borrowings as a public relations exercise to repair the damage to its reputation caused by its massive losses and scandalous misappropriations.

Worse, because 1MDB was cash-strapped and unable to fulfil its debt obligations on a timely basis, government agencies were forced to step into bail out 1MDB.

For example, Tabung Haji – the pilgrimage fund, was called upon to acquire a piece of 0.64 acres of land from 1MDB in Tun Razak Exchange for the exorbitant price of RM188.5 million or approximately RM2,774 per square feet in 2015.  1MDB had earlier acquired the land from the Government at the bargain basement price of only RM64 per square feet.

It is of the greatest irony the Dato’ Seri Najib Razak boasted of 1MDB’s RM10.4 million contribution to the 1,100 pilgrims – who were supposed to be funded by Tabung Haji, when Tabung Haji has been ripped off of more than RM184 million from the above transaction alone.

What’s more, now that 1MDB is unable to service its debts and is faced with a US$6.5 billion suit from Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Corporation (IPIC) in London, the tax-payers is now faced with another round of a multi-billion dollar bailout exercise by the Ministry of Finance which had explicitly or implicitly guaranteed the above debts.

Worse, the United States Department of Justice has now provided clear evidence of how US$731 million belonging to 1MDB was deposited in the Prime Minister’s personal bank account between 2011 and 2013.  Hence it is clear that what has been distributed to the poor in Malaysia is dwarfed by what Dato’ Seri Najib Razak received.

Therefore we call upon the Prime Minister to stop putting on a false front on 1MDB.  The public relations exercise is doomed to fail because the facts and evidence of the multi-billion dollar embezzlement from 1MDB is clear for all to see.

Dato’ Seri Najib Razak will serve the Rakyat better by explaining why he took US$731 million from 1MDB and why did he allow his son-in-law, Riza Aziz and the latter’s best friend, Low Taek Jho to pillage 1MDB to buy luxury properties, pay for gambling debts, acquire an aircraft, collect art masterpieces and finance their decadent lifestyles.

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