Thursday, October 06, 2016

Is Dato’ Seri Najib Razak’s strategy to deal with Malaysia’s entrenching reputation as a global kleptocracy to remain silent like a mouse?

Malaysians have been demanding answers from Dato' Seri Najib Razak on the 1MDB-related scandal, that is the RM4 billion SRC International, which is the former subsidiary of 1MDB.  Similar to 1MDB, the money which was borrowed from KWAP has been invested in mysterious and unknown funds overseas.  No one, including anyone from the Ministry of Finance (MOF) knows where the money has disappeared to.

The Prime Minister and the Attorney-General have also stubbornly refused to respond to the clear-cut evidence which have shown that SRC International has transferred, via intermediaries, at least RM67 million into the personal bank account of Dato' Seri Najib Razak.

However, it appears that Dato' Seri Najib cannot remain silent forever as, like 1MDB, the international authorities are catching up to the SRC International laundering scams.

The Swiss Attorney-General Office (OAG) has publicly stated that investigations revealed that substantial amounts of money were allegedly misappropriated from former 1MDB subsidiary SRC International and that fraud was committed based on a form of “Ponzi” scheme to cover it up.

Dato' Seri Najib Razak can no longer choose to remain silent in the face of another international investigation over funds which he controls.  He must come forward and disclose if the allegations made by the Swiss authorities are frivolous or are they substantive, which will require an open and thorough investigation in Malaysia.

In addition, Dato' Seri Najib Razak must state if he will provide full cooperation with the Swiss authorities who are demanding and requiring information from their counterparts in Malaysia.  Or is he going to merely pay lip service and ignore the requests?

At least in 1MDB, for the longest time, there were "faces" who responded to questions and queries, like Datuk Shahrol Halmi and Arul Kanda.

The question Malaysians have is, who is or are running the show in SRC International?  As far as we are aware, the Managing Director of SRC International, Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil has disappeared off the face of Malaysia together with another fellow Director, Datuk Suboh Yassin.  And yet despite their disappearance, they have remained Directors in SRC International over the past year or more.  In fact, when asked, the Prime Minister had responded in Parliament that there is no need at all to appoint new Directors or a new management team.

It is a testament to the failure of Malaysian institutions, entrusted to safeguard the people's money as well as law and order, that nothing concrete has been done to uncover another massive embezzlement of RM4 billion of funds from a state-owned subsidiary.  What have the police, Bank Negara Malaysia, MACC or the Attorney-General's office been doing?  Have they been closing both eyes because the scandal involved the Prime Minister himself?

If Dato' Seri Najib Razak believes that the Swiss allegations are frivolous and untrue, then he should immediately demand the Auditor-General commence a new report specifically on SRC International and table the report to Parliament.  If not, there is no longer any credibility to his administration which will be etched in history as the single biggest den of thieves.

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