PETALING JAYA: Tony Pua says there is no reason to change his stand on 1MDB despite Second Finance Minister Johari Abdul Ghani asking him to “give it a rest”.
In a prompt response to an “open letter” written by Johari yesterday, the DAP national publicity secretary said he had checked the facts behind his statements over the past week and earlier this year and maintains that the minister is a “liar”, saying that he was “covering for the prime minister”.
Pua especially took Johari to task for comments in the open letter referring to 1MDB as “the most scrutinised entity by all enforcement agencies in Malaysia”.
“However, you fail to also disclose that every single investigating agency was hampered and disrupted.
“When the PAC announced that we were summoning Jho Low for questioning, the PAC chairman (Nur Jazlan Mohamad) was soon replaced by Hasan Arifin who promptly reversed the decision.
“Despite the diligence of the Auditor-General’s Office, key documents such as 1MDB’s bank statements for its overseas subsidiaries were not handed over to the A-G. Neither did current 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda nor former CEO Shahrol Halmi hand over many other documents they promised when requested by the PAC,” Pua said.
On Johari’s contention that there was no clear-cut evidence to bring any criminal action against anybody for the 1MDB case at the moment, as “otherwise, I am sure that the police, MACC, Bank Negara Malaysia, the auditor-general, the PAC and the attorney-general would have taken action against the responsible individuals”, Pua said the whole investigation turned out to be a farce.
“Did you forget that just as the then AG (Abdul Gani Patail) discovered shenanigans relating to the prime minister, he was promptly ‘retired’ on spurious ‘health’ reasons?
“As if on cue, the new AG (Mohamed Apandi Ali) effectively dissolved the ‘Super-Taskforce’ and even went to the extent of instructing the MACC to stop any further investigations on the matter,” Pua said, referring to the ‘Super-Taskforce’ which was set-up by the prime minister to investigate 1MDB, and consisted of the attorney-general, the inspector-general of police, the MACC chief commissioner and Bank Negara governor.
Johari had also commented that “as far as the government is concerned, there is nothing to hide and nothing to cover up. The fact is that, and I know Pua being a PAC member knows it himself. There is no clear-cut evidence to bring any criminal action against anybody for the 1MDB case at the moment.”
Again, the Petaling Jaya Utara MP said that was a lie that Johari first brought up at a talk last week.
“I pointed to specific sections of the PAC Report which clearly concluded that the 1MDB top management has on dozens of occasions – lied and misled the Board of Directors, defied the decisions of the Board or worse, acted without the Board’s authority, all of which are legal offences.
“The PAC even asked the authorities to investigate the former CEO, Shahrol Halmi, and other officers involved for the above wrongdoings. However, a year later, Shahrol remains comfortably as of today, a director of Pemandu agency in the prime minister’s department,” Pua said.
Pua again challenged Johari to propose to the Cabinet to declassify the “harmless” Auditor-General’s report into 1MDB that remains hidden under the Official Secrets Act, since Johari had said “there is nothing to hide and nothing to cover up”.
Finally, Pua reminded Johari that there is a difference between “serving the nation” and “serving the prime minister”, and that so far any truths uncovered in investigations into 1MDB seemed to have been swept under the carpet with the crooks getting away scot-free. -FMT