Annuar Musa swears Umno’s frozen funds not from 1MDB

Tan Sri Annuar Musa speaks to reporters at the Parliament lobby in Kuala Lumpur July 4, 2019. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Tan Sri Annuar Musa speaks to reporters at the Parliament lobby in Kuala Lumpur July 4, 2019. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, July 6 — Umno’s funds which is currently frozen by the government do not originate from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), the party secretary-general Tan Sri Annuar Musa publicly swore today.

Insisting that the funds that are currently frozen are not from former prime minister and former Umno president Datuk Seri Najib Razak, Annuar claimed that Umno can produce documents to show the dates and the sources of the frozen funds.

“Because the funds that are attempted to be seized, I can swear on behalf of Umno, the money frozen in Umno’s account, there is not one sen that has anything to do with 1MDB.

“I dare to make this assertion because I have seen the documents in detail,” he said in a video of his speech during the opening of the Kuala Terengganu Umno delegates’ meeting that was aired on his Facebook page.

He said that Umno had indeed received funds from Najib in the 2011 to 2013 period, but claimed that these funds have been almost used up in 2014 and that subsequent funds came from other sources.

Earlier in his speech, Annuar sought to defend Najib’s action of receiving funds in his personal accounts, and distinguish it from the practice of “kleptocracy”.

“We also reject bribery and cronyism, we reject kleptocracy,” he said, before going on to explain kleptocracy as a government leader using his position to obtain personal gain.

“But our leaders — yes, it’s personal accounts — but it’s not for personal gain,” he said, claiming that the funds were instead meant for those such as mosque committees and 7,000 imams nationwide and to assist flood victims.

“Those are assistance that should have used government funds, but government funds were not used, but funds from contributions. But unfortunately it was placed in accounts defined as personal accounts.

“Unfortunately for Datuk Seri Najib, if the funds were not placed in an account by the name of Datuk Seri Najib Razak, it would not bring problems at all. But the reality is that account was channelled to (Umno) branches, divisions and Umno itself, because our country does not have laws on political funding,” he said.

Annuar said Najib had then chosen to have “contributions from friends” placed in an account, which he said was then spent especially during the 13th general election (GE13) in 2013.

Annuar said the new administration moved to freeze Umno’s accounts after the 14th general election, but claimed that those funds were fresh funds and not related to the 2013 account.

“Umno’s account that has more than RM200 million is the result of Umno selling Umno’s equity in 2016 in a halal (legitimate) and transparent manner, and that money is also from a few loans we took that were placed in our account to run the party, but the balance has nothing to do with the account that was received from Datuk Seri Najib,” he claimed.

Annuar also thanked the government for filing civil forfeiture lawsuits against Umno to recover funds allegedly originating from 1MDB, saying it would give the political party to provide its explanation.

“I thank them for doing the civil forfeiture (action), because we don’t have the slightest doubt that the account that was frozen, is not from illegal sources, but is Umno money that is genuinely nothing to do with 1MDB,” he claimed.

In the same speech, Annuar also claimed that Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) officers had visited his office two days ago, with a list of 28 other Umno units for him to contact for the purposes of recording of statements with the MACC this weekend.

Late last month, MACC filed civil forfeiture lawsuits to recover RM270 million of funds said to have originated from 1MDB and to have been channelled through Najib’s account to 41 respondents, including RM212 million that Umno itself allegedly received.

Others named in the list of 41 include Umno’s state chapters in Kelantan, Selangor, Kedah, Johor, Sabah, Pahang and the Pekan Umno division.

Najib is currently facing a total of 42 charges in court, and is now on trial for seven of these charges in the case involving RM42 million of former 1MDB unit SRC International Sdn Bhd’s funds.

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