SEMENYIH, July 5 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak posed a question to his detractors today — if he were to embezzle funds from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), why would he do it locally?
He made the statement alluding to the fact that if he were to have wired US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) of 1MDB’s funds into his own personal accounts, he would have done so in an overseas transaction.
“If I want to rob also I won’t do it in Malaysia, that is if I wanted to rob the people,” he said during a buka puasa event here today.
He added, however, that he would not betray the public by stealing public funds.
“But I am the prime minister, I will not betray Malaysia and the assets of Malaysia,” he said.
Najib added that he was adamant not to let “external parties” affect Putrajaya which was the reasoning for his consulting his lawyers whether or not to take legal action both locally and outside Malaysia.
“We cannot allow external parties threaten to bring down Umno and Barisan Nasional in Malaysia.
“That’s why in the press conference just now I said I have referred this matter to my lawyers to determine what my next move should be,” he said.
The Umno president said that he will decide what to do in regards to WSJ’s allegations in the next few days.
This comes after the Journal revealed on Friday that its 1MDB investigators have discovered five separate deposits from two sources that were made into Najib’s accounts, citing government documents that it claimed to have viewed.
The largest two transactions, it said, were for US$621 million (RM2.3 billion) and US$61 million allegedly made in March 2013, shortly before the tumultuous Election 2013 in May.
A further transfer of RM42 million, purportedly made into Najib’s account at the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015, is believed to have come from SRC International Sdn Bhd, a former subsidiary of 1MDB that was in 2012 parked under the Finance Ministry that Najib heads, WSJ said.
Yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin urged four federal agencies to work together and scrutinise the allegations against the PM and stained the country’s name.
Moments after, the public prosecutor issued a statement saying a special task force was set up and began investigations the same day WSJ ran its story, adding that more documents have been taken from three companies linked to 1MDB that had been incriminated.