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Friday, 17 July 2015
Was Jho Low in control of 1MDB’s board?
FMT Reporters | July 17, 2015
Sarawak Report looks to Public Accounts Committee inquiry to address this question
KUALA LUMPUR: Sarawak Report yesterday suggested that Jho Low may have been in control of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) board meetings at the time when the PetroSaudi joint venture deals were mooted, inked and put into effect.
Alleging that it was Low who put together the deal “at lightning speed”, the report went on to suggest that he may even have sought out the Prime Minister Najib Razak to assuage sceptical board members into agreeing to put into effect dubious plans by assuring them that the deal had the premier’s blessings.
This, Sarawak Report says, may account for the ‘prolific abuses’ which MP Tony Pua hinted at in a statement on Tuesday.
“[A]ny normal person reading the report will be stunned by the sheer number and scale of infractions and transgressions committed by 1MDB and its officers cited in the report,” Pua had said.
The report also suggests that former chairman Mohd Bakke Salleh may have quit his post shortly after details of the PetroSaudi joint venture emerged. Another board member, Employees Provident Fund’s Azlan Mohd Zainol, followed suit soon after.
Board members are believed to have been shocked to discover that US$700 million of the original US$1 billion raised for the joint venture deal by 1MDB had been side-tracked into a separate account, the report claims.
They were also reportedly concerned that there was “no documented transfer of assets into 1MDB from PetroSaudi to warrant the so-called ‘repayment’ of US$700 million to its parent company in the first place.”
Jho Low has always maintained that he had no involvement in 1MDB affairs.
Was Jho Low in control of the board?
Did he actually get Najib to instruct the board to approve the deal?
These are among the questions that hopefully the Public Accounts Committee will explore over the coming weeks.
Hopefully, he will make himself available to give testimony when called.