Everytime a politician, a minister or any Tom, Dick and Harry tried to defend 1MDB, they will lose credibility.
Take for example what the Prime Minister said yesterday when he defended Tabing Haji’s land purchase from 1MDB:
Najib, who is also 1MDB’s advisory board chairman, reiterated today that the land purchase was not a bailout.
“Surely we won’t be using the people’s money to bailout 1MDB.
“That is not a responsible government,” he said.
This is the ‘responsible’ government that had given RM950,000,000 of rakyat’s money to 1MDB back in March 2015 under the pretext of ‘standby credit’.
Nine hundred and fifty million ringgit of our money just to save a company which had stupidly acquired massive loans unnecessarily?
But the Prime Minister, without any guilt or hindsight had simply blurted out, “we won’t be using people’s money to bailout 1MDB”. He added ‘surely’ in the beginning of his sentence in case we do not believe him.
And since it is proven that indeed the government had bailed out 1MDB, it is now without any doubt the government under his administration is truly irresponsible. Can you believe a liar? Who had lied in parliament, and now in front of the media and bloggers in a buka puasa event?
The audacity of it all, the ability to lie to an audience with a straight face is a skill nobody can easily adapt.
Perhaps a better script management should be set in place.
Another politician who often times give misrepresentation of facts is the Finance Minister II.
When trying to defend 1MDB, he grabbed at straws and pinned all 1MDB’s woes to the arrest of one Xavier Justo.
Ahmad Husni said the arrest of former PetroSaudi International Ltd (PSI) executive, Xavier Justo, in Thailand recently has much impact to the 1MDB issue.
“Before this, 1MDB was seen as a ‘fragile’ company, involved in scandals and faced various ‘online’ accusations.
“With the arrest of Justo, and based on what he said, it is clear that the various issues concerning 1MDB did not arise and that it is on the right track,” he said when winding-up debate on the 11th Malaysia Plan at the Dewan Negara here Monday.
Basically, it seems that 1MDB is a healthy company and moving along well. Nevermind that it had raked RM665 million in losses with burgeoning debt of RM42 billion!
And now Second Finance Minister Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah has claimed that because Justo is now in custody, 1MDB’s problems do not exist.
“Before this, 1MDB was seen as a ‘fragile’ company, involved in scandals and faced various ‘online’ accusations,” said Husni in Parliament today. “With the arrest of Justo, and based on what he said, it is clear that the various issues concerning 1MDB did not arise and that it is on the right track.”
But the logic is flawed and incomplete. Do we know what documents were allegedly tampered and how many? What do the originals look like? What information could have been changed by Justo to create a scandalous picture out of nothing, if Husni and his people are to be believed?
Then again maybe the minister has forgotten that 1MDB’s woes exist long before Justo’s leaked documents came to public awareness, tampered or otherwise.
From perusing 1MDB’s annual accounts lodged with the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) alone, the discerning public would have noticed that 1MDB has never made real profit throughout its existence. Its claim to annual profit in four out of five full financial years so far had been entirely due to paper gains (see chart).
As a quick aside, in FY10 1MDB booked RM651.8 million in paper profit when it converted its 40% stake in a short-lived joint venture with Petrosaudi International into a loan to the latter. Then in FY11 through to FY14 the company booked revaluation gains on property it originally acquired at cheap prices from the government.
In other words, 1MDB had been bleeding since it was born, hiding these losses with paper profits. The company was shown up in the 2014 financial year ended March 31, 2014 (FY14) when its paper gains were no longer enough to paper over its cash bleed.
This is simply unsustainable. Clearly 1MDB had been speeding down the highway to ruin. So how is 1MDB on the right track, dear minister?
Unless, of course, by “right track” the good minister had meant something else entirely: borrow billions to pay inflated prices for power assets and invest the rest in dodgy schemes, losing money in the process, only to turn around and sell those assets and investments to pay the billions of debt in the first place.
Read the rest of his opinion here.
Please do not lie to the public. Salam Ramadhan everyone and have a good weekend.
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