Friday, February 23, 2024

Was the RM2.6 billion part of the war on terror?-


Later, I came across a US report that said this particular Saudi organisation spends billions a year in giving donations to organisations and movements, even to those in Malaysia, that share the same objective and ideals involving the propagation of Islam. Invariably, ABIM and a couple of other Malaysian Islamic movements and groups were on the list of recipients.

The question as to whether the RM2.6 billion that was alleged to have been transferred to Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s personal bank account came from 1MDB or not appears to have been answered — if what the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said is correct.

Of course, there are still some who do not believe what the MACC said and these sceptics suspect that the MACC is lying. But then these people will never believe anything the government says anyway so that cannot be avoided. Short of the MACC saying that the money came from 1MDB these people cannot accept any other statement.

Even those who have accepted the story that the RM2.6 billion was not from 1MDB but was from a donation or donations are still not satisfied with the revelation because the identity of the ‘mystery’ donor has not been revealed. It is not enough the MACC says the money came from a donor or donors but the sceptics want to know who that donor is.

Not only Umno but all political parties in Malaysia receive donations but none are going to reveal who these donors are. This makes it even more sensitive when the donors give money to both sides of the political divide, Barisan Nasional as well as Pakatan Rakyat.

Shrewd businessmen would normally donate to both sides because they are not really sure who is going to win the election. If you donate to one side and the other side wins you are in deep shit. So, to be safe, you donate to both sides. Then if the other side wins you are still covered.

I personally know of a few Chinese tycoons who do this. In fact, Malay tycoons do this as well. So, understandably, they do not want anyone to know that they are backing both horses and if it were revealed that they are donating to both sides they would not want to donate in future.

The second issue regarding this RM2.6 billion is whether it involves money laundering (see the news item below). If the money had been ‘smuggled’ into Malaysia or illegally transferred into the country and parked in a proxy’s bank account then the answer is most likely yes.

However, in the case of the RM2.6 billion, it was done ‘over the table’ and not ‘under the table’ and it was parked in Najib’s personal bank account and not hidden in a proxy bank account. Hence Bank Negara has to know about it. They cannot not know when the figure is huge — RM2.6 billion — plus it involves the Prime Minister. Even if it were just RM2.6 million, Bank Negara would know about it.

So, if we rule out dirty money or stolen money and give Najib the benefit of the doubt that everything is above board and legal, and that this is why he used his personal bank account instead of hiding the money, then we would have to speculate as to where the money came from — since they are not telling us the source.

If I were to speculate I would say that the money had something to do with the international war on terror. I would even go so far as to say it might have been more than just RM2.6 billion. But then I am merely speculating so maybe over time we will know not only the source but also the actual amount involved.

More than 30 years ago, not long after Anwar Ibrahim left ABIM to join Umno, I visited a certain organisation in Saudi Arabia together with a one-time President of PAS who has since died (there were four other people with us, all still alive). That Saudi Arabian organisation is involved in financing organisations and movements all over the world that propagate Islam. In short, it was buying influence or support.

Later, I came across a US report that said this particular Saudi organisation spends billions a year in giving donations to organisations and movements, even to those in Malaysia, that share the same objective and ideals involving the propagation of Islam. Invariably, ABIM and a couple of other Malaysian Islamic movements and groups were on the list of recipients.

Since 911 when the US-led war on terror became the number one priority, the US and its western, plus Arab, allies have focused on making sure that Islamic fundamentalism or extremism is curtailed. For example, one aim of the Islamic State is to bring down the Saudi monarchy and wipe out Wahhabi Islam. Not only the Sunni Muslims, the Shia Muslims, too, are bent on bringing down the Saudi government.

If what ex-Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said is true — that the RM2.6 billion came from the Middle East — then this could probably have been the budget to finance the international war on terror. And the fact that Najib made a few trips to Saudi Arabia to have a personal audience with the King (I think the last such trip he made was a couple of months ago and it was in the news) this theory of mine is probably not too far off the mark.

Why does Najib need to meet the Saudi King for a private audience? And I believe in the last audience he had with the King a couple of months ago the Deputy Prime Minister, Zahid Hamidi, was in the delegation. (Yes, Zahid and not Muhyiddin — and that was when I began to suspect that Zahid was about to replace Muhyiddin as DPM and I wrote about that possibility).

Actually, this is not something new. Saudi Arabia has been funding international organisations and foreign leaders since long before Merdeka, since the time when that kingdom began to grow rich with its oil money. That was what the report I read said.

In short, the Saudi Arabian royal family makes sure that it can continue to rule as an absolute monarchy minus democracy and free elections by spreading money to many countries, governments and foreign leaders. And that is why the US talks so much about democracy and free elections (and even sends in its army to bring down undemocratic governments) but does not utter a word regarding Saudi Arabia.

Well, that is only my theory and is mere speculation. However, in the absence of details and confirmed facts, that is the only explanation I have on how RM2.6 billion or probably even more ended up in Najib’s personal bank account.

But then I could be wrong but let us see what happens and whether the facts are finally revealed.


RM2.6 billion donation to PM invites suspicion, group says

(Malay Mail Online) – The mysterious RM2.6 billion donation to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak can raise questions on whether money laundering was involved, a group said today in pushing for the regulation of political financing.

The Centre for A Better Tomorrow (CENBET), which promotes good governance and moderation, said proper guidelines on political contributions must be drawn up based on standards in developed countries, such as public disclosure on the sources of funds and how the money is used.

“It is unusual for foreign entities to donate huge sums. This can give rise to questions about whether there’re any elements of money laundering, foreign interference and security risks,” CENBET co-president Gan Ping Sieu said in a statement.

“For the first time, we learn of political donations to the tune of billions of ringgit, transferred into an individual’s account. This has given rise to suspicion about whether there are any strings attached, or the donor’s motives, given the staggering amount,” he added.

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said yesterday that the RM2.6 billion channelled to Najib’s personal bank account did not come from state-owned 1Malaysia Development Berhad as alleged, but that it was a donation, without specifying who the donors were or how the money was used.

Umno supreme council member Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said yesterday that it was better for Najib, who is also Umno president, to hold the party’s money and assets in a trust account as it was more secure than having the funds parked under proxies.

UtamaEDITORIAL1MDBWas the RM2.6 billion part of the war on terror?