Equanimity’s bargain-basement sale price shows govt’s incompetence, says Jho Low’s spokesman

Haslem said that the below market price sale of the yacht was due to the ineptitude of the Pakatan Harapan administration. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim
Haslem said that the below market price sale of the yacht was due to the ineptitude of the Pakatan Harapan administration. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, April 3 — Fugitive financier Low Taek Jho, who is better known as Jho Low, has slammed the recent sale of the superyacht, Equanimity, by the Malaysian government to Genting Malaysia Bhd.

His spokesman, Benjamin Haslem, Co-Chief Executive Officer of Wells Haslem Mayhew Strategic Public Affairs, said in a statement that the below market price sale of the yacht was due to the ineptitude of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration.

“The bargain-basement sale price accepted by the Mahathir Government for the yacht Equanimity is the final chapter in yet another tale of the regime’s incompetence and disregard for the rule of law.

“It took the Mahathir Government twice as long as they promised to sell the yacht, the auction flopped and the ‘transparent’ sales process the Mahathir Government committed to at the outset has been subject to multiple abrupt changes — largely forced on the Government through their own incompetence,” Haslem said.

It was reported today that Equanimity was sold to Genting Malaysia Bhd for US$126 million (RM514 million) but Haslem pointed out that the value was further eroded by the expenditure on the vessel’s upkeep — reportedly some US$3.5 million (RM14.3 million).

Haslem also said that if the yacht was not illegally seized from Indonesia and docked in a hazardous environment at Port Klang, it would have maintained its value and avoided a fire sale.

He said that the below market value sale of the yacht were merely a “misguided attack” on the government’s political opponents.

“No wonder recent by-election results demonstrate a growing concern from the Malaysian people,’’ Haslem said, referring to the recent Cameron Highlands and Semenyih by-elections which Barisan Nasional had won.

“As we have stated from the beginning, this is a failed PR stunt, which arrogantly ignored court rulings in Indonesia as well as established legal proceedings in the US,’’ he said.

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