Aletho News


Malaysian PM Won’t Face Charges over $681 Million Saudi ‘Gift’

teleSUR – January 26, 2016

Malaysia’s attorney-general has closed a lengthy corruption investigation involving the country’s prime minister.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak won’t be facing any legal consequences for a US$681 million donation from the Saudi royal family after the country’s attorney-general decided to drop the case on Tuesday.

“There was no reason given as to why the donation was made to PM Najib – that is between him and the Saudi family,” said Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi.

Najib returned all but US$61 million shortly after the money transfer in early 2013, during an election campaign, because it was not used, he said. The prime minister calls the donation, made to his personal account, a “gift” that was for the party and not meant for his own personal gain.

Opposition parliamentarian Tony Pua told The Guardian that the “basis to absolve the prime minister of any wrongdoing is utterly without merit because the ‘personal affair’ does not preclude corrupt motives or transactions.”

The scandal has dominated the Malaysian political scene for the past seven weeks, with his own party launching a public campaign demanding his resignation. Malaysia’s next elections are set to take place in 2018.

Apandi, who replaced the previous attorney general – dismissed by Najib for “health reasons” – will tell the country’s anti-graft commission to close the investigation into the prime minister.

One of the related probes of the commission includes US$932 million in misappropriated funds from SRC International, a subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Berhad, which Najib chairs. About US$9.79 million of the funds ended up in Najib’s own account, reported the Wall Street Journal. Though Malaysia is Asia’s third-largest economy, it has suffered from the global drop in oil prices. Food, transportation and electricity prices have all risen as the government has slashed public subsidies.

January 26, 2016 - Posted by | Corruption | , ,

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