RJ Rithaudeen: Latheefa can go fly kites with her ‘1MDB’ name list

Every indicator points to the idea that Latheefa is adding new flavour to the 1MDB saga to shift the spotlight away from the prosecution’s case. Source (pic): TTF

On the 8thof May 2019, Uma Devi testified that the money that ended in Najib’s private Ambank account did in fact constitute donations and a gift from the government of Saudi Arabia.

It is quite difficult to ignore the damage this brought to the prosecution’s case as Uma is the branch manager of Ambank Jalan Raja Chulan where Najib opened accounts with the stated intent of receiving the said fund.

The trial also made mention of a RM3.95 billion loan from KWAP that SRC was seeking for purposes of working capital and general investment.

On the 29thof May 2019, the fund’s former CEO, Dato’ Azian Mohd Noh, admitted that she did not convey to SRC the need to file a proper loan application.

Her testimony pointed to elements of negligence and incompetency on KWAP’s part and foiled all attempts by the prosecution to imply that Najib pressured KWAP to approve the loan.

Does all this have something to do with the forfeiture applications that Latheefa announced? Is she releasing the list of suspected fund recipients in stages to shift conversations away from the prosecution’s collapsing case?


PETALING JAYA: Last Friday, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission filed civil forfeiture applications against 41 individuals and entities to recover RM270mil related to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

The move came as a surprise to a vast majority of Malaysians who recalled a press conference that the anti-graft agency held on the 3rd of July 2018.

On that day, the MACC claimed it had 408 names on its list. Dato’ Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull was the head of the MACC then while Latheefa Koya is the person helming the agency now.


The difference between the numbers the duo announced begged the question if Shukri lied or if Latheefa is playing games or if the MACC itself is accustomed to confusing Malaysians.

When people began popping questions, Latheefa quickly resorted to ‘face saving measures’ by telling them not to jump to conclusions.

All that did was prove she was quite the arrogant and self-opinionated fighter-cock many painted her out to be. Actually, people who personally know her and her family told me that it runs in their blood.

The thing is, when someone holds a press conference as elaborate as the one she held, it is to make sure that whatever it is said is known to as many people as possible.

Naturally, the audience is going to hold on to everything the person says and raise questions should there be doubts.

When Latheefa announced the MACC’s applications, she did so to millions of Malaysians who heard her say one thing and Shukri another.

Blaming those millions for getting confused or concluding that the MACC ‘narrowed’ the list after a year of investigations is as dumb as it is preponderant.

In the first place, the onus would have been on her to explain why the MACC took almost a year to act on a portion of Shukri’s list.

In the second place, it would have been prudent for her to explain why action was taken only after Shukri stepped down as MACC Chief Commissioner.

It makes no sense whatsoever for her to blame the audience as her press conference, as elaborate as it seemed, provided very little information to begin with.

Actually, nothing about the PC made any sense at all.

At the time of announcement, the MACC had long charged Najib with three counts of criminal breach of trust, one count of abusing his position and three counts of money laundering involving SRC International funds amounting to RM42mil.

All the charges were hinged on the exact same findings, accusations and suspicions that led to the civil forfeiture applications Latheefa announced.

So why the need to file the applications now that a trial is ongoing? Would it not risk subverting court proceedings?

Every indicator points to the idea that Latheefa is adding new flavour to the 1MDB saga to shift the spotlight away from the prosecution’s case.

On the 8thof May 2019, Uma Devi testified that the money that ended in Najib’s private Ambank account did in fact constitute donations and a gift from the government of Saudi Arabia.

It is quite difficult to ignore the damage this brought to the prosecution’s case as Uma is the branch manager of Ambank Jalan Raja Chulan where Najib opened accounts with the stated intent of receiving the said fund.

The trial also made mention of a RM3.95 billion loan from KWAP that SRC was seeking for purposes of working capital and general investment.

On the 29thof May 2019, the fund’s former CEO, Dato’ Azian Mohd Noh, admitted that she did not convey to SRC the need to file a proper loan application.

Her testimony pointed to elements of negligence and incompetency on KWAP’s part and foiled all attempts by the prosecution to imply that Najib pressured KWAP to approve the loan.

Does all this have something to do with the forfeiture applications that Latheefa announced? Is she releasing the list of suspected fund recipients in stages to shift conversations away from the prosecution’s collapsing case?

On Tuesday, I lodged a police report against Latheefa, Tommy Thomas, Shukri Abdull and Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz to seek investigations into the MACC’s filings (follow link below).

I told the police that it would have made more sense for Latheefa to investigate the reports I lodged against Zeti and Shukri last year than to file meaningless applications based on conjecture and hearsay.

These reports were lodged around the time Shukri claimed that the MACC had 408 names on a list of 1MDB fund recipients.

Is that why a portion of the list is only being released now? Did Shukri have to resign so that Latheefa could come in and do his dirty job?

Was Shukri afraid that my reports would lead to investigations proving that he conspired with Zeti and Thomas to fabricate evidence with the intent of throwing Najib under the bus?

RJ RITHAUDEEN


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