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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

KWAP approved RM4 bil in loans as Najib had decided on it, AG tells court

Attorney-General Tommy Thomas.
KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court hearing Najib Razak’s corruption trial was told today that the pensioners’ fund investment panel merely went through the motions to approve a RM4 billion loan to SRC International as the matter had already been decided earlier.
Attorney-General Tommy Thomas suggested this was because that decision came from Najib Razak, who was then prime minister and finance minister.
Najib, who is in the witness box after being called to answer to seven criminal charges in relation to RM42 million in SRC International funds moved to his bank accounts, however, disagreed with the suggestion by Thomas.
Thomas: I put it to you that the real decision to approve the loan came from you.
Najib: I disagree.
Thomas, who was cross-examining Najib, said KWAP merely went through the motions as the loans had been pre-approved by Najib.
“The decision was a fait accompli (decided beforehand) and the investment panel had no choice,” he said.
The loans were disbursed to SRC in 2011 and 2012 after the Cabinet approved government guarantee letters to KWAP.
Earlier, during the prosecution case, KWAP investment panel chairman Wan Abdul Aziz Wan Abdullah, who was also the finance ministry secretary-general, told the court that Najib had asked him to approve the RM2 billion in 2011.
This witness also said the investment panel members to KWAP were appointed by the finance minister. Najib held that portfolio from 2008 until last year
Today, Najib also dismissed a suggestion by Thomas that he wanted KWAP to pay SRC the second RM2 billion loan even before the government guarantee letter was sent to KWAP.
Former senior finance ministry officer Maliami Ahmad had testified that Najib had piled pressure through intermediaries to prepare a Cabinet paper on the government guarantee for SRC International.
He also said, from his experience, that this was the first time a loan had been given to a borrower even before the government guarantee letter was finalised.
Najib is accused of abusing his power as prime minister by giving government guarantees on SRC International’s RM4 billion loan from KWAP.
He is also charged with three counts of money laundering and three counts of criminal breach of trust in the transfer of RM42 million to his accounts from the former 1MDB unit.
The hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali has been adjourned to Wednesday. - FMT

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