Irwan Serigar: I wasn’t involved in approval process of UMS’ operations, maintenance project

Former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court January 6, 2021.  — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur High Court January 6, 2021. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 6 — Former Treasury secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah told the Sessions Court today that he was not involved in the evaluation, support or approval process in the operations and maintenance work project for mechanical and electrical systems at Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) with Syarikat Asli Jati Engineering Sdn Bhd and ULink Property Sdn Bhd.

Mohd Irwan, 64, when reading out his witness statement said he signed two documents related to the project but it was just to inform him about the process and actions taken by the Contract Division, Government Procurement Division (BPK) of the Ministry of Finance.

“I only became aware of the project after looking at the memorandum for consideration of the finance minister. My position as Treasury secretary-general requires me to take note of projects under the Ministry of Finance.

“I did not keep any documents on this project because it was managed by the Contract Division which was then led by Datuk Hashmuddin Mohamad as the BPK secretary in the ministry,” he said.

The fifth prosecution witness said this during examination-in-chief by Deputy Public Prosecutor Francine Cheryl Rajendran on the second day of the trial of of former Sabah Infrastructure Development minister Datuk Peter Anthony who is facing charges of using false documents.

Peter is the managing director of Syarikat Asli Jati Engineering while ULink Property is a wholly-owned subsidiary of UMS.

Mohd Irwan also confirmed that he had signed two memorandum for consideration to the Minister of Finance regarding the application for approval of the project.

“I did not write any notes on it because I was not involved in decision making or other processes involved in the project. I also did not send this memorandum to the Minister of Finance,” he said.

Peter, 50, as the managing director of Asli Jati Sdn Bhd, is charged with forging a letter from the UMS deputy vice chancellor’s office dated June 9, 2014, by inserting a false statement in the title of the letter with the intention of using it to deceive the office of the Principal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister at the Perdana Putra Building in Putrajaya between June 13, 2014, and Aug 21, 2014.

He was also charged on the optional charge as the managing director of Asli Jati Sdn Bhd over the use of a false document as genuine, namely a letter from the office of the deputy vice-chancellor of UMS dated June 9, 2014, which had a false statement in the title of the letter, and he had reason to believe that the document is false, in the same place and time.

Peter was also charged under Section 468 of the Penal Code which carries a maximum jail term of seven years and a fine and under Section 471 of the Penal Code and is punishable under Section 465 of the same code which carries a jail term of up to two years, or a fine, or both, if convicted.

The trial before Judge Azura Alwi continues tomorrow. — Bernama

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