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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Rafizi apologises for identifying wrong Florence Goh



PKR vice-president Rafizi Ramli has apologised for misidentifying a woman and alleging her involvement in an exposé involving Putrajaya appointing a US lobbyist.
Rafizi Ramli said he had misidentified the wrong Florence Goh in a previous statement, and accepted responsibility for his mistake.
"I confirm that (Florence) Goh Siew Boey from CRT Insight Technologies Sdn Bhd is not the Florence Goh who is the director of Godfrey Group Ltd which was involved in the lobbying contract.
"I accept full responsibility for this mistake, and apologise to Siew Boey and CRT Insights Technologies for airing their names," Rafizi said in a statement today.
His apology comes after Siew Boy held a press conference in Putrajaya today, denying involvement in the lobbying scandal, and demanding an apology from the Pandan MP.
Siew Boey, who is a director at CRT Insights Technologies, said she had no relations to the firm Godfrey Group, nor was she the head of a Johor Baru NGO identified by Rafizi.
She also denied engaging any US lobbyist.
"I'm not this person and I am not related to any party that is reported in the articles," Siew Boey said.
The press conference was organised by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Wee Ka Siong.
Wee oversees the Malaysian Entrepreneur Development Secretariat (Same), which Goh had reached out to when she learned of Rafizi's allegations from an email enquiry sent by Malaysiakini.
Last Thursday, a US news portal claimed that Putrajaya had hired a former aide to US President Donald Trump, Healy Baumgardner-Nardone, to carry out lobbying activities.
Then on Saturday, Rafizi claimed Baumgardner-Nardone was hired through Godfrey Group - whose director is named Florence Goh - based on US Department of Justice (DOJ) documents.
The DOJ filings, Rafizi said, showed that Godfrey Group had the same commercial address in Johor Baru as Siew Boey's CRT Insight Technologies.
However, Siew Boey said her office was located at 42, Jalan Molek 2/1, and not 42, Jalan Molek 2/3, as alleged by Rafizi.
Wee furnished a Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) report showing that a different company is operating at 42, Jalan Molek 2/3, and it does have a director named Florence Goh.
Additionally, the Florence Goh operating at 42, Jalan Molek 2/3, has a different Chinese name from that of Siew Boey.
Siew Boey said she does not know what the other company does.
'Similar addresses caused confusion'
Rafizi acknowledged this mistake saying the almost similar addresses had caused confusion.
He also expressed appreciation that Siew Boey had come forward with an explanation.
However, he has asked Wee to organise a press conference with the Florence Goh who is linked to Godfrey Group.
Malaysiakini is still attempting to contact Florence Goh of 42, Jalan Molek 2/3.
Besides seeking an apology, Siew Boey has lodged a police report on the matter, and reserved the right to take further legal action against the Pandan MP.

Meanwhile, Wee chastised Rafizi for jumping to conclusions without making proper checks.
"Before you make any wild allegation you must have proper checks.
"How can you just make such mistakes, you can't simply accuse a person and put up the CCM details," Wee, who is MCA deputy president, said.
He also reiterated the Prime Minister's Office statement that Putrajaya had not engaged Baumgardner-Nardone.- Mkini

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