DAP leader Lim Kit Siang today questioned whether police chief Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar was still awaiting the Cabinet’s nod to investigate damning allegations of embezzlement surrounding state company 1MDB as alleged by the US Department of Justice (DOJ).
“Can Khalid enlighten Malaysians whether he had officially asked for such ‘green light’ from the Cabinet or the prime minister for the Malaysian police probe into 1MDB to investigate the allegations of criminal conduct in the DOJ filings, or whether he had never asked for such approval knowing that it would not be forthcoming, whether from the Cabinet or the prime minister himself?” asked the DAP parliamentary leader today.
Last week, Khalid said the police completed the first phase of their investigation into 1MDB, which was restricted to what he termed as five recommendations by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) as ordered by the Cabinet.
“I have said it before, the five recommendations from the PAC are our focus, so I do not want the police to be distracted from what was ordered for us to do, or else the focus of the investigation will deviate,” said the police inspector-general.
However, Kit Siang had questioned Khalid saying there were no recommendations by PAC, whose report on 1MDB has been shielded from the public.
Instead, the Gelang Patah MP said PAC merely mentioned some lessons learnt from the 1MDB debacle.
Kit Siang said the admission by Khalid that he waited for permission from the Cabinet before launching an investigation raised questions of police impartiality and independence.
“For instance, can IGP Khalid order the police probe on 1MDB to investigate the US Department of Justice (DOJ)’s damning allegations of criminal conduct of the theft, embezzlement and money-laundering of multi-billion ringgit 1MDB funds or must he first get the “green light” from the Cabinet or the Prime Minister himself?” asked Kit Siang.
On July 20, US investigators revealed that some US$3.5 billion was misappropriated from 1MDB, and named top Malaysian officials involved in the illegal syphoning of money out of the state fund.
The DOJ also named the stepson of Datuk Seri Najib Razak, Riza Aziz, for using more than RM250 million of 1MDB funds to finance the production of the movie “Wolf of Wall Street” starring Leonardo diCaprio.
Najib himself was not named, although the document merely cited “Malaysian Official 1”.
Kit Siang said if DOJ allegations of high-level theft against “Malaysian Official 1” wre true, then the person should be considered a top criminal in Malaysia.
“How can the Malaysian Police be unconcerned and uninterested?” asked Lim, urging the police to find out the identity of the reference, which was mentioned 36 times in the DOJ papers.