Umno wants cops to return party ‘funds’ seized in Najib raid

Jerry Choong
Police cars enter the road leading to former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s residence in Kuala Lumpur May 16, 2018. — AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, May 24 — Umno has requested the police return the money confiscated from its former president Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s house on Jalan Langgak Duta on May 17, claiming it is part of the party’s campaign funds.

The Umno Strategic Communications Unit said the funds were obtained from donations for GE14, and are also meant for Umno’s management.

“It is both regrettable and disappointing when the remainder of Umno’s funds for campaigning were confiscated while being transferred to the new Umno leadership following the resignation of Datuk Seri Najib Razak as Umno and BN president,” it said in a statement on the party’s official website this evening.

According to the Umno unit, political funding is allowed by law.

“Therefore, Umno is working to restore these funds and requests that the police release the funds to the party as soon as the authorities complete their investigations.

“Umno is now in the process of rebuilding the party and the return of these funds will help strengthen the rebuilding process,” it added.

Citing the Umno constitution, the unit said the party president is nominally responsible for sourcing and managing funds for the party, including funds for the general election.

“Political donations are an accepted fact for all parties in this country and Umno is no different, where our former president Datuk Seri Najib Razak obtained campaigning funds before GE14, and also management funds.

“In fact, when former party president Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad resigned, he also handed over RM1.2 billion to the party and its three million members,” it said.

The Umno Strategic Communications Unit did not state the amount of party “funds” that were allegedly in Najib’s safekeeping.

Police sources told Malay Mail yesterday that its May 17 raid on three luxury condominium units at Pavilion Residences linked to Najib had yielded 35 bags full of cold, hard cash in various currencies amounting to RM110 million.