May 22, 2024

New Malaysia Times

Blog News Impose Expose

Ex-1MDB CEO suspected illegal activities between Najib and Jho Low

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 17 — Former 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) chief executive officer (CEO) told the High Court today that he had suspicions that some illegal activities were happening in the company between Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and fugitive businessman Low Taek Jho or Jho Low over the US$3 billion bond issuance.

The US$3 billion bond issuance involved 1MDB Global Investments Limited (1MDB GIL) to Abu Dhabi-Malaysia Investment Company (ADMIC).

Mohd Hazem Abd Rahman, 47, however, said he never asked Najib, who was the prime minister at that time to clarify the matter but shared his concern with former 1MDB chairman, Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin and Najib’s former principal private secretary, the late Datuk Azlin Alias knowing that they had access to Najib.

Najib, who was also the Finance Minister at that time, was the chairman of 1MDB’s board of advisers.

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The 10th prosecution witness said this when cross-examined by lawyer Wan Aizuddin Wan Mohammed in the former premier’s trial involving misappropriation of RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds.

Wan Aizuddin: You said you had suspicions that the fundraising exercise…something is wrong. There is some nefarious agenda by Jho Low…and you also said Jho Low told you that all these bond issuance is an instruction of the prime minister?

Mohd Hazem: Yes

Wan Aizuddin: Wouldn’t that mean the prime minister would also be involved as per what Jho Low told you in this nefarious agenda?

Mohd Hazem: Wouldn’t the prime minister be involved? Absolutely yes, on hindsight, yes.

Wan Aizuddin: So, that is a very heavy accusation to say that the prime minister was involved in something illegal with the company?

Mohd Hazem: Yes, to a certain extent, yes.

The witness however disagreed with the lawyer’s suggestion that the reason why he did not clarify with Najib was because not only that he had a suspicions on Jho Low entire agenda but he also played along with Jho Low’s plan.

Mohd Hazem said he never raised his suspicions to the 1MDB’s board of directors and did not lodge any report to the authorities on the instructions he received from Jho Low.

Najib, 67, is facing four charges of using his position to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3 billion from 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.

The trial before Justice Collin Lawrence Sequerah continues on Wednesday.

BERNAMA