Failure to address concerns will cast doubts on integrity of Malaysia’s financial regulator, says opposition chief
KUALA LUMPUR – Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has called on former Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz to come forward, following a claim regarding her family’s involvement in the 1Malaysia Development Bhd scandal.
“The recent allegation implicating former BNM governor Zeti’s family in 1MDB-related transactions linked to Jho Low and Singapore banks demonstrates that Malaysia remains a long way from resolving the scandal, which has brought such ill repute to our nation for many years,” said the opposition leader in a statement today.
“The latest information regarding Zeti’s potential involvement in 1MDB concerns the freezing of monies that originated in illicit fund flows from 1MDB by Singapore authorities in the offshore accounts belonging to the family members of Zeti.”
The PKR president and Port Dickson MP said Zeti, currently the Permodalan Nasional Bhd chairman, should immediately confirm the veracity of statements that she made earlier regarding her knowledge of illicit 1MDB fund flows.
“She must also clarify what she knew about 1MDB as it was unfolding, and whether members of her family benefited financially from deals with Jho Low.
“And whether, in her capacity as BNM governor, she knowingly permitted illicit fund transfers in and out of Malaysian bank accounts owned by politically exposed people.”
He said failure to address these concerns will cast doubts on the integrity of Malaysia’s financial regulator.
Among others, he suggested that Singapore play its part in clearing the air on the issue, as the allegation could have adverse implications for the republic’s reputation as a financial hub.
“Ever since investigations into 1MDB began, other countries have meted out stiff fines and penalties to banks and financial executives involved in the scandal.
“Malaysia, where these fund flows emanated from, has inexplicably done very little.
“Those who profited from the 1MDB scam must be held accountable. Those who facilitated the complex and sprawling global scandal must also be answerable, as 1MDB could not have been possible without the tacit approval of many financial and regulatory institutions.”
The latest allegation involving the national sovereign wealth fund follows a report by fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin’s Malaysia Today website on Monday that said wanted businessman Low Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low, allegedly transferred millions of dollars to various individuals and entities.
According to unverified statutory declaration documents dated March 13, 2019 sighted on the website, Zeti’s husband Tawfiq Ayman and sons Abdul Aziz Tawfiq and Alif Ayman Aziz Tawfiq admitted to having received the funds from Singapore bank accounts through Cutting Edge Industries Ltd, with the sum coming from a company linked to Low.
The veracity of the SD documents has yet to be determined by the authorities.
Zeti in 2018 denied her involvement in the massive fraud, as well as knowledge of the RM2.6 billion found in former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s account.
By : THE VIBES