JOHOR BARU, Sept 11 — Johor Umno urged the authorities to be fair in the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) probe to facilitate the return of a fleet of “Skuad Sayang” vans following yesterday’s revelation by its former president that the funds were donated by a member of a Saudi Arabian royalty.
Johor Umno liaison committee secretary Datuk Samsol Bari Jamali said the state party hopes the relevant authorities can consider the new evidence released by Datuk Seri Najib Razak that the Saudi Arabian royalty donated US$100 million (RM304.5 million) to him in 2011.
“Johor Umno will take the initiative to apply for the release of the 27 “Skuad Sayang” vans as the vehicles were under the state party covering all 26 divisions in the state, including the state liaison headquarters.
“The authorities must investigate the matter in a fair and transparent manner to clear the release of the vans to assist the state party in their community service,” he said when contacted by Malay Mail today.
On August 2, a total of 27 of the red-and-white liveried vans under the care of the state’s Wanita Umno woman’s wing, were seized by police.
The Johor Umno leadership were ordered by a federal police team to surrender the vans for investigations under the Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act (AMLA) 2001.
Samsol Bari said that the state party will have to first communicate with the party’s central leadership and its lawyers on the feasibility.
He said the party will always cooperate with authorities in their investigations.
Yesterday, Najib published several documents on his personal Facebook account detailing several transfers of funds into his personal bank account from one Prince Faisal Turkey Al Saud totalling US$20 million and US$80 million from Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Finance, as well as a letter from Saudi Prince Abdul Aziz Al-Saud.
The scanned documents provided by the 65-year-old former prime minister showed a US$10 million (RM30.5 million) deposit that was made into Najib’s account on February 23, 2011, another US$10 million (RM30.2 million) on June 13, 2011, a sum of US$49,999,988 (RM148.8 million) on August 18, 2011, and an additional US$29,999,988 (RM95 million) deposited on November 25 the same year. The exchange rates used varied across transfers.
According to the documents, the transfers had come from Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Finance and from one Prince Faisal Turkey Al-Saud.
Najib also revealed a majority of the funds through the donations were used for the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition.
“The money was used to purchase several vans for Umno in Johor, but unfortunately those vans have been seized by the Pakatan Harapan government,” he said.