Tok Mat says Umno will challenge MACC civil forfeiture suit

Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan speaks to reporters during the 65th PAS Muktamar in Kuantan June 21, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan speaks to reporters during the 65th PAS Muktamar in Kuantan June 21, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUANTAN, June 21 — Umno will fight the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in court to recover its funds, the Opposition party’s acting president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan said today.

Also known as Tok Mat, the Negri Sembilan state lawmaker said Umno will present its arguments in court on why the MACC has no right to seize the money transferred to several Umno divisions.

The commission had earlier today announced that it had filed civil forfeiture lawsuits against 41 individuals and entities, including political parties like Umno and MCA, as well as several corporations and Islamic non-governmental organisations whom it claimed to have received a total of RM270 million wrongly transferred into their accounts by ex-prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak from funds belonging to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

Mohamad also said that based on MACC’s procedures, funds frozen for at least three months will then enter the forfeiture stage, and a year after being frozen, it will seize the assets.

“That is their procedure according to the law, and as such Umno has to present its arguments as to why the funds should be returned to us,” Hasan told reporters after attending the 65th PAS annual congress at the Indoor Stadium of the Kuantan Sports Complex here.

He said the party’s lawyers have written a letter to the MACC to request the return of the funds.

“After the period of one year has passed, it will be left up to the courts to decide.

“So both Umno and MACC will present their arguments in court, and it remains to be seen whose argument has greater weight,” Hasan said, adding the letter to the MACC would also be used in court.

MACC chief commissioner Latheefa Koya told a news conference in Putrajaya earlier today that the commission is seeking to recover approximately RM270 million of 1MDB’s money dispersed from Najib's personal account in AmBank.

Of the RM270 million amount, 78.5 per cent or RM212 million was allegedly transferred into accounts held by Umno, whether directly or indirectly.