Malaysia Dateline

Tony Pua

Who are you kidding, Pua hits out at promise to act on 1MDB

DAP today questioned a minister’s promise to take action against those named by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) over the 1MDB scandal, saying the statement was completely in contrast to the government’s silence over the suit filed in Los Angeles last month.

“Despite the enormity of the scam and scandal, the Malaysian government has shown shocking indifference to the expose,” said DAP’s publicity chairman Tony Pua.

“Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak only took pains to emphasise that it is only a civil suit and it didn’t involve him.”

Finance Minister II, Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani, reacting to a remark from his cabinet colleague Datuk Paul Low not to let off those guilty of embezzling 1MDB funds, said there would not be “two ways about it”.

“The prime minister has said the same thing. I’ve said it many times as well. We will take action against those responsible if we have enough evidence,” Johari reportedly said.

But Pua said the reactions from Putrajaya made Johari’s promise a “joke”

“How is Johari expecting Malaysians and the international community to believe him when there has been a complete absence of outrage from the Najib administration on the DOJ suit which the Federal Bureau of Investigations claimed “the Malaysian people were defrauded on an enormous scale,” he asked.

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 mystery businessman Low Taek Jho and Riza Aziz, the stepson of Najib who was accused of using funds stolen from 1MDB 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”, mentioned 36 times in the 136-page document.

Pua said despite the damning revelations by the US documents, Malaysian authorities have been silent.

“We certainly didn’t hear of an arrest warrant for Low Taek Jho or Riza Aziz to answer questions, despite their being named as the parties who laundered 1MDB’s funds in the United States.

“In addition, the new Bank Negara Governor, Datuk Mohammad Ibrahim has publicly washed his hands off the 1MDB scandal by declaring the 1MDB case closed despite the money laundering allegations.

“Hence, who is the Second Finance Minister Datuk Johari Abdul kidding?” asked Pua.