KUALA LUMPUR, July 9 — Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor had provided Umno with advance cash payments of between RM100,000 and RM300,000 monthly, his former aide said in court today.
Datuk Mohd Rahimi Rejab, formerly the senior political secretary to Tengku Adnan when the latter was a minister, was testifying as the 10th prosecution witness in Tengku Adnan’s ongoing corruption trial.
Quizzed by Tengku Adnan’s lawyer, Datuk Tan Hock Chuan, Mohd Rahimi confirmed that Tengku Adnan had on multiple occasions used his own money to advance funds for Umno’s political party’s expenses, including staff salaries and election campaigns.
“Because Datuk Seri not only at Umno headquarters, (but also at) Federal Territories Umno and Putrajaya Umno, so it is a big sum.
“Around RM100,000 to RM300,000, maybe more, per month,” he said on the fourth day of Tengku Adnan’s trial.
Mohd Rahimi confirmed Tengku Adnan’s multiple roles in Umno, including as Umno supreme council member, Federal Territories Umno chief, Putrajaya Umno division chief, and his highest role as Umno secretary-general.
He also confirmed to Tan that the Federal Territories Umno operated independently and received funding from Tengku Adnan.
Mohd Rahimi, who was effectively Tengku Adnan’s chief of staff from 2003 to 2018, said that he had arranged Tengku Adnan’s “very busy” schedules that could involve 10 to 20 appointments per day.
When asked how members of the public or party members would meet Tengku Adnan, Mohd Rahimi said he would schedule such appointments or meetings with Tengku Adnan if these were to take place at the then-minister’s offices.
As the Federal Territories minister then, Tengku Adnan had maintained three offices — at the ministry in Putrajaya, at Perbadanan Putrajaya and at the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
Tan then asserted that it was understood that the meetings in which people sought for money from Tengku Adnan sometimes lasted only two to three minutes.
Mohd Rahimi then said that whenever people found out that Tengku Adnan was in his office, many would come and transform the environment to what he likened to a “fish market”.
Mohd Rahimi also confirmed to Tan that he knew Tengku Adnan had given cash advances to Umno for campaign expenses during the two June 2016 by-elections in Sungai Besar, Selangor and Kuala Kangsar, Perak.
Tan did not ask how much Tengku Adnan was estimated to have given Umno in cash advances for these two by-elections.
Mohd Rahimi confirmed Tengku Adnan gave cash advances to Umno division leaders and party supporters especially for by-elections.
When deputy public prosecutor Mohamad Firdaous Mohamed Idris asked him about the source of Tengku Adnan’s cash advances to Umno, Mohd Rahimi said he could not say.
“That I am not sure,” he replied.
Mohamad Firdaous also asked Mohd Rahimi how he knew Tengku Adnan had given cash advances to Umno or Barisan Nasional.
Mohd Rahimi said he would ask politicians seeking to meet Tengku Adnan about the purpose of the meetings, to which he said many told him it was to obtain “contributions”.
Mohd Rahimi said he would then ask Tengku Adnan if he was agreeable to meeting these politicians, and would only schedule the appointments if Tengku Adnan agreed.
“After they meet Datuk Seri, sometimes he will tell me he gave contributions to them,” Mohd Rahimi said.
The trial before High Court judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan will resume at 2.30pm.
Former federal territories minister Tengku Adnan is on trial over the alleged acceptance of a RM2 million bribe in June 2016 from property developer Aset Kayamas Sdn Bhd’s Tan Sri Chai Kin Kong in the form of a cheque banked in into Tengku Adnan’s company Tadmansori Holdings Sdn Bhd.
In its opening statement at the start of the trial, the prosecution had said it would produce evidence to show that Tengku Adnan had asked Chai to contribute RM5 million to RM6 million for by-election funds, and also evidence to show that the businessman had subsequently personally handed over a RM2 million cheque to Tengku Adnan at the latter’s DBKL office.