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Friday, August 31, 2018

Najib: Jamaluddin Jarjis was already wealthy when I became PM

a man wearing a suit and tie© Provided by Star Media Group Berhad
PETALING JAYA: Tan Sri Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis was already wealthy and successful when Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak became Prime Minister, the latter said on Friday (Aug 31).
The former premier was responding to allegations that the late Jamaluddin, a former Science, Technology and Innovation Minister and Second Finance Minister, was wealthy because of their relationship in Umno.
He explained that Jamaluddin acquired his wealth from being a successful businessman, setting up an engineering consultancy firm in 1984 followed by purchasing a company called EPE Power that was listed in KLSE soon after.
"From this, he was able to invest in many other projects that earned him good income," Najib said in a Facebook post.
He continued to explain that EPE Power was then declared as an Independent Power Producer (IPP) by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad during his previous tenure as Prime Minister in the 90s, and was given several government projects at the time.
"Even though we had a good relationship, Jamaluddin never asked for any projects from me.
"At the time, his children took over the businesses while he worked as an ambassador in the United States and continued to invest," Najib added.
These investments, he said, included "saving" an independent electric company in Kulim in 2004 that had a debt which added up to RM1.4 billion.
"He also had a 10% stake in NADI, a private company from the 90s, which is also an investor in MALINDO Air," Najib said.
He maintained that the late Jamaluddin was a highly educated and successful businessman. "He passed under tragic circumstances and we should not think badly of him, especially with unfounded allegations."
On Thursday (Aug 30), PKR Youth information chief Lee Chean Chung questioned the amount of wealth owned by the late Jamaluddin.
Lee said Jamaluddin held cabinet posts for 15 years while he was in Umno but according to the government's code of ethics, a minister should not be involved in business.
Jamaluddin's wealth came to light when the Syariah High Court allowed his wife and children to intervene in an application for faraid (inheritance and wealth distribution) certificate filed by his mother over the deceased's RM2.082bil estate.

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