Najib’s claims on 1MDB debts baseless, say current and ex finance ministers

Former Premier Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak must apologise for his baseless claims on the IMDB debts, says DAP Secretary General Lim Guan Eng. Photo screen grab of RTM’s live telecast of Parliament session.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 3 – The claims made by former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in Parliament on Wednesday that the Malaysian people did not pay a single sen of public funds for the IMDB debt are baseless, both the current and former finance ministers are saying.

In a statement issued today, former Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said current Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz also had agreed that the claims made by Najib that the government did not use a single sen of public funds to repay 1MDB debts were baseless.

“As a former Finance Minister, I know that this is not true for Najib to claim that 1MDB debt had not damaged the country’s finances when Goldman Sachs, audit firms KPMG and Deloitte, Ambank and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) had returned 1MDB funds totalling RM23 billion to Malaysia,” said Guan Eng.

“Najib did not admit that these funds were returned to Malaysia in the form of penalties for defrauding 1MDB monies with Goldman Sachs paying back USD 3.9 billion for their nefarious role and wrongdoing in their issuance of a USD 6.5 billion bond for 1MDB, which was misappropriated.

“These payments are insufficient to pay back the total amount of principal and interest for 1MDB debts amounting RM52 billion, of which the principal amount is RM32 billion.

“Now it is Najib’s word against a former Minister of Finance and the current Minister of Finance that rejects his fantasy that the people do not have to pay or bear the 1MDB debts,” the DAP Secretary General and Member of Parliament for Bagan said.

Guan Eng also referred to the former premier’s conviction in December last year when the Court of Appeal upheld a conviction against Najib with a 12 years in jail sentence and RM210 million in fines over corruption and money laundering linked to funds misappropriated from a 1MDB unit.

Citing information from the Finance Ministry, he said the government has repaid RM13.3 billion of 1MDB’s debt so far, with RM38.81 billion still outstanding as of Dec 31 last year.

— WE