KUALA LUMPUR, June 15 — PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said he would welcome a reinvestigation of the Bank Negara Malaysia foreign exchange scandal from the 1990s, following the pointed suggestion of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
Yesterday, Najib listed on Facebook several cases that he felt should be reviewed under the current administration, including the scandal in which BNM was alleged to have lost as much RM33 billion at the time.
While he was not specifically named in Najib’s post, Anwar responded on his own Facebook page to say he would support a fresh investigation into the events that took place when he had been the finance minister under the first Mahathir administration.
He also thanked Najib for not indulging in attack politics when making the suggestions.
“You see there’s no need to be nasty if you’re unhappy with something. There’s been a lot of comments including from Najib himself and I’m thankful as this is the proper way to air your grievances.
“In fact I agree with it and welcome any investigations because the main thing is I never stole anything. I never took a sen, I didn’t take a billion (ringgit), I did not take any timber nor stocks,” Anwar said on his Facebook page yesterday.
“So if you want to investigate this forex losses or 1MDB it’s up to the authorities.”
However, Anwar did appear to make a veiled attack at the Najib administration by pointing out that it had amassed a national debt of RM456 billion and a 4.8 per cent federal deficit in 2011, which he contrasted to the RM89 billion debt and zero-deficit during his time as the finance minister.
In July last year, the police reports lodged over the findings of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) on the BNM scandal was categorised as requiring “no further action” due to the lack of documentary evidence to pursue investigations.
The RCI concluded that Anwar and the prime minister at the time, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, should be investigated to see if they had misled the government over the matter.
Additionally, the original complainant — RCI secretary Yusof Ismail — also retracted his police report in November 2017.
Among the RCI’s findings were that BNM lost RM31.5 billion on the forex market between 1992 and 1994, and that the losses due to wanton speculation could amount to criminal breach of trust as defined under Sections 406 and 409 of the Penal Code.