Friday, May 8, 2015

Rafizi: Mr Auditor, where's the 1MDB report?

5:34PM May 8, 2015
By RK Anand
As the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) morass becomes more convoluted, PKR lawmaker Rafizi Ramli turns his attention to Auditor-General Ambrin Buang.

With the latest revelation of Tabung Haji's deposits being used to purchase government land given to 1MDB at an inflated price, Rfaizi said there is no doubt that the firm’s mess has seeped through to other important institutions, known and unknown.

"Tabung Haji now joins the infamous KWAP (pension fund), smeared by their lack of financial common sense and prudence in giving out loans or buying government assets from 1MDB.

"Of course, the biggest fear is whether other institutions, including EPF (Employees Provident Fund) and PNB (Pemodalan Nasional Bhd), have had similar dealings with 1MDB so far.

"It could be that these institutions are also about to enter transactions with 1MDB - so the best thing for them is to declare that they will not enter into any transactions with 1MDB," Rfaizi told Malaysiakini.

Since the 1MDB issue has ensnared other institutions that form the bedrock of the nation's economic and social stability, Rafizi said the auditor-general could no longer drag his feet.

"Without a formal certification of 1MDB's problem, with a complete diagnosis of its lack of governance, it is difficult to expect the managements of these state institutions with great public interest to stand up and oppose instructions.

"They need something to fall back to when they are penalised for defending public interest.

"Hence, this it why it is of utmost urgency that the audit by the auditor-general cannot be delayed, not a single minute more," he added.

Growing public anger

The PKR vice-president is dismayed that the auditor-general has not even outlined the expectation of when this would be completed.

"The announcement for the auditor-general to probe 1MDB now runs the risk of being seen as a mere announcement, meant to pacify public anger then, hoping it would go away.

"It has not, and it will continue to grow. But most importantly, we need the auditor-general (Ambrin,left) to complete the audit in order to prevent more money from flowing into 1MDB.

"If no announcement is made in the next one one or two weeks on the completion of the audit, I expect heated debate on this in next parliamentary session that begins on May 18," Rafizi added.

On March 4, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak had ordered a vetting of the debt-laden firm's accounts and promised action if financial wrongdoings were detected.

On March 10, Ambrin said the audit has commenced.

The 1MDB fiasco is also the most prominent weapon in former Dr Mahathir Mohamad's arsenal with regard to his campaign for Najib's ouster.
~ Malaysiakini

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