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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Kadir: 1MDB digging one hole to cover another

Kadir Jasin questions the need to close down the company if everything is smelling sweet like roses.
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KUALA LUMPUR: The latest move by 1MDB to accept billions from so-called Middle East partners, wholly owned by the Abu Dhabi Government, can be likened to digging a hole (borrowing) to cover another hole (repaying loans).
Whether 1MDB was going to be wound up, or restructured, warns a veteran newsman, it would not reduce the company’s debt burden.
“Those who were responsible for creating 1MDB, especially Najib Abdul Razak, must be held accountable,” said Kadir Jasin, a former New Straits Times Group Editor in Chief in his latest blog posting. “Najib is not only Prime Minister but Finance Minister and Chairman of the 1MDB Advisory Board.”
“The investigation into the affairs of 1MDB must be continued.”
In saying praise to God, Kadir disclosed that he had obtained “information from roadside peddlers who are close to members of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that much confidential information has been obtained by it”.
“The information was even more damaging than what we already know.”
There’s a possibility, he added, that more local banks and financial institutions have been exposed to the 1MDB debt crisis, and this includes an institution related to financing export and import. “It’s being rumoured that a cheque for several hundred million ringgit changed hands.”
Kadir, continuing, said it was the 1MDB debt crisis being larger than what’s publicly known, the reason for the company’s CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy to meet with strong Najib-supporter Barisan Nasional Back Benchers Club Chairman (BNBBC) Chairman Shahrir Samad and reportedly Media Adviser Paul Stadlen. “This was at a time when Arul Kanda was supposed to be overseas on an important assignment. The overseas engagement was the reason that Arul Kanda couldn’t turn up for the PAC hearing on 1MDB.”
Kadir was also commenting, in his blog posting, on the report that 1MDB would be wound up.
He wonders why the company should be wound up since 1MDB Chairman Lodin bin Wok Kamaruddin had earlier sworn that the company’s business model was good, it had many assets, it was being managed well, the auditors had given it a clean bill of health, no one was cheating, Jho Low had no connections with it, no commissions amounting to billions had been paid out, and no monies were missing.
“Surely, it cannot be because of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and certain bloggers with information picked up by the roadside, raising questions, that Najib wants to close down 1MDB, asked Kadir. “We have to direct this question at the Cabinet spokesman on 1MDB, 2nd Finance Minister Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah.”
“It’s not known whether he has the authority of the Cabinet to act as its spokesman on 1MDB.”
However, according to the MCA-owned The Star, 1MDB would be closed down early next year, noted Kadir. “If the company was being closed down, why make plans for Abu Dhabi interests to pump in USD4.5 billion (RM16.4 billion) into 1MDB to help it repay some of its RM42 billion debt?”
He pointed out that two of the Middle East partners are International Petroleum Investment Corporation (IPIC) and its subsidiary Aabar Investments, both “business partners” of Jho Low with 1MDB.
He finds it impossible to believe that the two Middle East firms would pump in RM16.4 billion into 1MDB without getting their proverbial “pound of flesh”. “It seems that they want shares and not security,” said Kadir. “They are probably eyeing Edra Energy, 1MDB’s power asset.”
According to information obtained by the roadside, Kadir conceded, IPIC/Aabar would get 49 per cent of Edra Energy when it’s listed or when it’s sold.”
The newsman hastened to add that no one should think that the RM16.4 billion was part of the missing billions mentioned by Mahathir. “It would not be the done thing.”

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