Talkback

Vell Paara Puts Shafee On The Spot!

There is nothing wrong with MIC receiving funds from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, who is also the chairperson of BN, said party treasurer-general S Vell Paari.

“All component parties receive money from BN, that is politics….. From the first prime minister, second prime minister, and even during the time of (former prime minister) Dr Mahathir Mohamad, all (BN) parties receive money for programmes and things,” he told Malaysiakini.

He was responding to whistleblower site Sarawak Report, which claimed that MIC received about RM19 million between 2012 and 2014.

Vell Paari pointed out that the funds were given to MIC and not its leaders, while the money had been declared in the party’s annual report and audited.

“Indirectly, what she (Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown) has done, in her effort to discredit me and MIC, is to show how much the prime minister has helped MIC and the Indian community…..

“Of course when somebody helps you, you have to be grateful, isn’t it? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist (to figure this out).

“She (Rewcastle-Brown) says I am a staunch supporter of Najib. Of course, only supporters support their leaders. Do you expect enemies (to do so)?” he added.

Sarawak Report had also alleged that the prime minister gave RM650,000 to the wife of former MIC deputy president S Subramaniam following his serious illness.  Quizzed on this, Vell Paari said Rewcastle-Brown should not pick on someone who is unwell.

“Stick to me. Why pick on a person who is not well?” he said.  Vell Paari said Najib’s gesture showed that he is a kind-hearted person.

“This shows the humanity in our prime minister, to settle his (Subramaniam) medical bill,” he added.

Following the DOJ’s latest civil forfeiture suit, Vell Paari had described it as a political conspiracy of the opposition to topple a democratically-elected government.

Our comment

Sarawak Report thanks Vell Paari for once again confirming that the documentation we have referred to in our reporting on Najib’s payments is entirely accurate.

This is the same documentation that shows lawyer Shafee Abdullah was paid RM9.5 million by Najib during his prosecution of opposition leader Anwar.

It doesn’t appear to worry Vell Paari that the money that Najib has so “kindly” handed out to him and his political cronies was in fact STOLEN from the Rakyat.  Worse, it was stolen borrowed money, so the interest on that stolen money will also have to be found on top of the original needing to be repaid.

This doesn’t worry Vell, who is still tearful at the generosity of his benefactor with other people’s stolen money.

And why should the widow of his colleague not also receive a secret handout of over half a million, he opines?  To hell with the widows of other people less fortunately connected!

Likewise, to hell with women dying in childbirth at record levels in places like Sarawak, because there is no money left over after all of the corruption in high places to pay for even basic health care.  To hell with their struggling orphans.

As long as Najib’s cronies can still feed at the trough and drive around their comfortable quarters in air-con luxury motors, Vell Paari reckons the Rakyat are being well served.

Others may disagree.

Neither will his crony Shafee Abdullah be so grateful to Vell’s open gob.  Because Shafee is about to appear in court to explain our evidence that Najib paid him RM9.5 million during Anwar’s trial.  Vell has just made it a lot harder for Shafee to deny it!

Najib Is A Politician Not A Sacred Being....

The US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) pursuit of 1MDB assets was part of a conspiracy to meddle in Malaysia’s affairs because the country had a Muslim-led government, said Umno information chief Annuar Musa.

“With the 14th general election to be called this August, September or October, they, or specifically the DOJ are collaborating with those seeking power to once again launch a preemptive strike to change the regime through a secret, careful and effective planning.

“They don’t need the truth, the burden of proof and need not follow the rule of law of the target country.

“It is sufficient to make a complaint, accusations, insinuation and create the perception of instability in the country,” he said in a statement.

He cited countries such as Iraq and Yemen as examples of US intervention.

As such, he urged Umno members to stand by their leaders and “double their efforts to combat slander, threats and psychological warfare in all forms and through all types of media”.

Our comment

The question that many are asking is whether Malaysia IS being led by genuine Muslims at this time?

Surely, a bunch of thieves, who are unable to provide any sensible defence against damning criminal accusations, ought not be considered proper practising Muslims or worthy of any other faith?

To the contrary, Malaysia is full of pious Muslims, who have expressed themselves shocked at the criminal behaviour of this bunch of looters, now so loud to call themselves holy and to cosy up to PAS for protection.

These shocked Malay Muslims have moved to support the opposition alliance, now led by the former Muslim Prime Minister of twenty years – with all sides united in disgust at the irreligious behavoiur of the self-praising fellows around Najib who are insisting they are above the law.

As for Annuar’s ridiculous scare-mongering about bombing and the like – he should remember that the US has for decades been a friend to Malaysia and a country should take note of a caution from its allies, in circumstances such as the one his boss has dragged the country into, rather than rejecting it with brainless talk of plots, conspiracies, invasions and the like.

The IGP Ought To Reserve His Right To Silence

Inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar pointed out that Malaysian Crime Watch Task Force (MyWatch) chairperson R Sri Sanjeevan was his acquaintance as well at one point…..Khalid said this in response to his earlier admission of knowing the main suspect detained in connection with a police protection racket in Malacca.

He was commenting on a Sarawak Report article which claimed that the suspect K Gopinathan was in direct telephone contact with Khalid.

The police chief went on to explain that when he attended meetings or functions, he meets numerous people, some of whom express interest in wanting to help the police fight crime.

“So we exchange numbers and keep in touch. In some cases, these people have an ulterior motive and misuse my name for personal gratification.

“As and unless, it can be proven that I had benefited, be it in the form of money or otherwise, from the illegal activities perpetrated by these individuals, then there is nothing left to say.

“Yes, there is the issue of perception. But perception is not tantamount to guilt. Let’s see if the investigators can pin anything on me,” he added.

Our comment

IGP Khalid must resemble Donald Trump to work for – and not only because he thinks he is an autocrat.

It is because the IGP can always be relied upon to open his mouth and not necessesarily in his own favour.  At a press conference last week the IGP acknowledged that the alleged police protection racketeer known as Gopi was his “family friend”.  Not only he, but his son and his brother in law had received calls from Gopi in recent weeks (several in the case of his son).

Also to receive several calls were a number of the IGP’s most senior vice squad colleagues, as Sarawak Report detailed in a subsequent article.

Now, the IGP is changing his story.  It seems Gopi may have just been someone he met at a party and handed his number to!  A passing acquaintance… he can’t quite remember.

“Let’s see if they can pin anything on me” the IGP concluded, using the classic words of a gangster instead of a cop!

Any lawyers out there who fancy the chance to represent this garralous chap?

RSVP To IGP

Inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar has reiterated his call to Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown for her to come to Malaysia to assist the police in investigating the whistleblower site’s claim that Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak paid lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah RM9.5 million.

Khalid, however, said that Rewcastle-Brown will not be guaranteed a safe passage in her arrival and return back to London, England.

“I will not guarantee her a safe passage. If she wants to come, she comes and proves whatever accusations that she made.

“If not she will keep on making all sorts of noise, allegations which are baseless,” Khalid told a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.

The top cop was earlier asked whether Shafee had been called in by the police in relation to police reports lodged against him in the purported RM9.5 million payment.

However, Khalid said that the reports received thus far were “hearsay” based on Sarawak Report.

“I’ve already said that if you (Rewcastle-Brown) want to prove all your allegations, come forward and produce whatever documents you have to show whatever your accusations are correct.

“If not, it remains hearsay,” he added

Our comment

Sarawak Report would like to thank the IGP for his generous invitation to visit him in Malaysia, in order to pass information.

However, we do note his refusal to offer ‘safe passage’, which we have to admit provides a slight deterrent.

After all, whilst he claims the information we have provided on corrupt payments to UMNO, prosecutor Shafee and others is “hearsay”, he has at the same conference admitted that our story about his family friendship with a protection racket gangster was correct.

London is by and large a safe and comfortable place, where police chiefs tend to avoid socialising with gangsters and officers refrain from beating up detainees in jail (there are rather a lot of stories about deaths in custody emanating from Malaysia).

So, since the IGP is the man who can provide safe passage and is now openly refusing to do so, we fear that we are going to have to decline his doubtless well-intentioned and gracious offer.

However, we are happy to provide this Bukit Aman sleuth with some tips regarding the matters he is interested in.  To verify the information we have provided, he needs only to persuade his colleague the Attorney General to fulfil his constitutional duty and re-open the task force files on 1MDB.  There before him he will see all the material that we  have been quoting from, which is why anyone who knows anything about the case has been hiding under a stone ever since the material started coming out.

Is Sozzled Lester UMNO's Only Weapon Against Corruption Allegations?

The opposition’s reliance on foreign media reports to bring down the country’s leaders is seen as a threat that could undermine the country’s democratic system, says Umno supreme council member Mahdzir Khalid.

He described the opposition’s move of using foreign media reports to bring down Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak as unfair. Mahdzir said this when asked to comment on the action of former Sarawak Tribune editor, Lester Melanyi (photo, below), confessing that reports by Sarawak Report founder Clare Rewcastle-Brown on Najib all this while were nothing but lies.

“The problem in Malaysia is when there are those who take news conveyed in perspective without knowing its truth and authenticity, this makes it easier for the foreign media to continue to report lies for the purpose of inciting the people. “The opposition also conveniently takes these foreign media reports to be made into issues to fight the country’s leaders.

By right, we have to first verify whether the information is correct, otherwise, this is what happens,” he told reporters…… “Maybe, after this, many more details will emerge to prove that the allegations against Najib are untrue, However, I’m sure people will always support the country’s leaders as they realise that all these are all lies,” Mahdzir said.

Last Saturday, Melanyi told a press conference that Rewcastle-Brown’s accusation against Najib of paying RM9.5 million to lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah was not true, and that the report was written out of personal motive. Melanyi then requested he be given a few weeks to submit evidence on the matter.

Our comment

It took Sarawak Report less than 24 hours to debunk Kuching’s sozzled drunk, Lester Melanyi’s garbled ravings last time he stuck his head above the parapet. We proved he was an entertaining liar and that his ‘sources’ were rubbish.

He clearly needs another handout and has therefore been prepared to conduct another of his ‘press conferences’.  Lester we forgive you.

Our reporting, to the contrary, is backed by the sort of evidence that UMNO’s bigwigs plainly do not wish to see discussed in court. Moreover, the details on the Shafee payment and others made by the Prime Minister were in the hands of many others, as UMNO bosses are well aware, before we received and published it.  The Wall Street Journal and ABC Australia published many of the details from these documents early last year.

So, we have our witnesses and a string of sources. If we did not, the whole of UMNO would have charged to court months ago eager to prove us and others to be lying.  In fact, why even bother go to court when you can publish the truth and unmask the liar, like we did when we dispensed with Lester within 24 hours back in 2015?

Rest assured, if Shafee had NOT been paid RM9.5 million we would have heard by now and been shown the proof.

So, Melanyi’s press conference and the reliance of this UMNO spokesman on such an embarrassing character is clear evidence they have a very big problem.  It shows the only ‘witness’ they have been able to bring to their defence over the PM’s corrupt payments is Ludicrous Lester, who has spent the last 5 years sloping round the bars and tea houses of Kuching and hardly knows his right hand from his left foot.

You bet he has asked for a ‘few weeks’ (read several months/forever) to produce the evidence to back up his latest rambling allegations.  He will have taken the payment for the press conference in advance however.

Now Shukri Has Admitted Shafee Was Biased!

Nancy said that her answer to Parliament in 2015 that Shafee had only received RM1,000 was based on information given to her as then-de factolaw minister by the AG’s Chambers, and it remains unchanged.

“As far as I remember, whatever response was given to me to reply in Parliament, that was the official one,” she told Malaysiakini.

Nancy said Shafee believed he was performing a “national service”.

Whistleblower site Sarawak Report, citing leaked investigation papers, previously claimed that Shafee had received two payments totalling RM9.5 million directly from Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.

However, Nancy was unaware of this.

“Other than that, I do not know. I mean all those allegations, I cannot confirm nor refute them because as far as I’m concerned officially, the answer given to me was RM1,000.

Our comment

Malaysia’s jailed opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, is to return to court following the emergence of new evidence that the case against him was perverted by a whopping RM9.4m bung to the lead prosecutor personally paid by the Prime Minister – presenting a clear conflict of interest.

Now, minister Nancy Shukri has made matters worse by confirming that the prosecutor, Shafee Abdullah, a private lawyer controversially drafted in by the government for the task, had agreed to do the job for a token fee, since he viewed the matter to be a “national service”.

National service because he is on a crusade against sodomy or national service because he wanted the opposition leader in jail to protect the Prime Minister, who had just paid him close on ten million ringgit?

The guilelessness of so many senior figures in BN, who damn themselves by their own remarks, is itself quite remarkable.  A decent court should have little problem ruling in Anwar’s favour, when you have ministers such as Shukri openly admitting the agenda was to put him away rather than making a fair judgement.

You Help Me And I Will Help You

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak today announced a Hari Raya incentive of RM500 for Felda settlers but said those who had taken Felda to court or refused to sell their produce to the agency would not be receiving it.

“I would like to clarify the incentive, we will only be paying it to those who have done business with Felda.

“Those who have not done business with Felda, or those who have sued Felda – I’m sorry, they are not on the list,” he told the audience at a breaking of fast event at Felda Sungai Sayong in Kulai, Johor this evening.

Najib said the Hari Raya incentive will cost the government RM47.2 million.

On top of that, Najib said Felda settlers will each receive RM280 as a dividend from Felda Global Ventures Holdings Berhad (FGV), bringing the total payout to RM780 per person.

Our comment

“You help me with your vote, I help you with public money'”, Najib Razak earlier told voters in Sarawak.  He was on a stage and being recorded and clearly he simply saw nothing wrong in the blatant bribe.

Later, Parliament let him off.  After all, this Prime Minister has handed round public money without restraint to anyone who helps him keep power, including UMNO leaders.  Not only is it public money, but it is stolen public money that has cost in many cases double, because it was borrowed in the first place.

And if he is willing to bribe, who is surprised that he is also willing to blackmail with the same stolen public money?  Those who have protested at the abuse and theft from their public funds, such as FELDA, are now to be ‘punished’ by the removal of their allocated crumbs from the loot.

They should be proud to hold their heads high and say no to the stolen booty. After all, it is just a fraction of their own money that has been stolen from them and by making their stand against this corruption they are starting to stop the rot.

Things can be better and more prosperous if crooked politicians become a thing of the past. The FELDA abstainers should be praised for showing up Najib and their reward will be in better governance.

When In A Hole Don't Dig Deeper

Former inspector-general of police Musa Hassan has questioned the validity of Sarawak Report‘s allegation that Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak paid prominent lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah RM9.5 million….

“So how can the RM9.5 million be paid to the lawyer if the account was already closed? I think this claim is not true as the payment was (alleged to have been) made on Sept 11, 2013 and Feb 17, 2014,” Musa said in a press conference in Petaling Jaya….

Dismissing Sarawak Report‘s allegation as slander, Musa said he too was a victim to such claims when he was investigating the first sodomy allegation against Anwar in 1998.

“I was also a victim of slander, I was accused of receiving RM5 million from (former prime minister) Dr Mahathir Mohamad which was supposedly put in my accounts in Singapore.

“But this is not true because I did not receive the RM5 million,” he said.

Meanwhile, citing a police report which was made based on the claims by Sarawak Report, Musa said the report was therefore false in nature.

“I hope the police will conduct investigations under Section 182 of the Penal Code for giving false information,” he added

Our comment

Imagine holding a press conference to make a loud statement to the media about something that is not directly related to yourself, when you haven’t even thoroughly checked the facts.

This is what Musa Hassan, a former IGP has done.  What a nightmare it must have been to work for someone that careless in a top position.

If Musa had properly examined the facts (read Sarawak Report for example) he would have noted that from day one we made clear that one of Najib’s personal accounts (no 2112022009694), the one which received $681 million in March 2013, was closed the following August:

268792291c836813108e6fde15e6fabbc3fbb0da

However, our article about Shafee’s payments quite clearly cites a later account Najib opened, into which money from SRC International was paid (a subsidiary of 1MDB).

This was account number 2112022011906, which remained open until we broke the scandal in 2015.  Getting these sorts of details right are the bread and butter of investigative work and something this senior officer ought to have been taught in police college.

It is lucky he is now retired and perhaps he should keep it that way, instead of digging his friends into deeper holes, when they themselves are plainly deciding that silence is the better option.

Najib's Frozen Singapore Accounts

Singapore’s central bank has fined Credit Suisse and United Overseas Bank (UOB) a total of S$1.6 million ($1.2 million) for breaching anti-money laundering rules in transactions related to Malaysia’s scandal-ridden state fund 1MDB.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said on Tuesday it had fined UOB S$900,000 and Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) S$700,000 as it wrapped up its two-year probe into banks involved in 1MDB-related transactions, which revealed several breaches of anti-money laundering (AML) requirements and control lapses….

“These include weaknesses in conducting due diligence on customers and inadequate scrutiny of customers’ transactions and activities,” it said in a statement, adding it did not, however, detect pervasive control weaknesses at UOB and Credit Suisse….

“While the fines imposed on UOB and Credit Suisse may appear low relative to the amounts that we see imposed by U.S. and UK regulators, they are substantive by Singapore standards,” said Nizam Ismail, partner at RHTLaw Taylor Wessing LLP, where he advises clients on financial services regulation.

Our comment

Unlike the other penalties related to this investigation, which involved accounts managed by Jho Low, his alias Eric Tan or various subsidiaries of 1MDB, MAS has kept silent on the ownership of the illicit bank accounts managed by Credit Suisse and UOB.

In the absence of further explanation, Malaysians are therefore left with only one possible conclusion, which is that these two banks were managing accounts for Prime Minister Najib Razak.  Accounts which MAS has clearly linked to 1MDB and which therefore now must have been frozen by Singapore.

A Prime Minister ought not to be protected in such a way and treated as some sort of special individual who is above the law, particularly if Singapore wishes to claim that it is a proper international banking centre, run by rules.

Deals have clearly been done, which show the hand of political interference – death to financial confidence.  On the other hand, the compromise arrived at has clearly been designed not to let Najib off the hook completely and to open the way for eventual justice in this matter.

Singapore has confirmed the money in his accounts was dirty and has punished the banks’ failure to conduct due diligence on a politically exposed figure. They will not have released this money back.

The world is effectively waiting for Malaysians to show the guts and fortitude to deal with their own villains and chuck them out – then there will be a lot of money waiting to reward them!

More Najib Handouts!

Like brothers, Prime Minister Najib Razak praised his predecessor Abdullah Ahmad Badawi for his undying loyalty to Umno and the BN government.

Announcing a RM5 million fund for the Tun Abdullah Badawi Legacy Organisation, Najib said Abdullah was a great national icon. “I appreciate Pak Lah’s loyalty all this while. Even after all that had happened, he continued to give his support, standing by me, the government, Umno and BN. “He never betrayed the party, let alone leave this beloved party,” he said.

Najib then said he did not come empty handed. “I am announcing a RM5 million fund for Pak Lah’s legacy. “The money will be given this year. If we have funds next year, we will give more,” he said in his speech at the opening of the Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Lecture in Putrajaya. Najib also expressed his gratitude to Abdullah for voluntarily ceding the post of Umno president to himself, paving the way to Putrajaya.

Our comment

For a Finance Minister Najib Razak clearly has no idea whatsoever what constitutes an appropriate payment.

So, it’s fine to hand out money to his “brother” and the guy who handed him his present job.

Might Malaysian’s be allowed to ask where Najib got the money from this time?  Is it RM5 million grabbed from 1MDB or from some other public fund raided by Najib?

Or has he just raided the Ministery of Finance?

What is this money to be spent on that it is justified for a Prime Minister to just hand it over to his old political chum…?