“PROJECT UGANDA” – Why Was A UBG Bank Executive Employed As 1MDB’s Investment Manager During PetroSaudi’s Loan And Buy Out Negotiations?


Sarawak Report

Documents available to Sarawak Report highlight the key role played by a well-known contact of the tycoon Jho Low, called Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil, during the company PetroSaudi International’s negotiations to raise a further billion dollars in loans out of 1MDB in the course of 2010.

This was the same period during which PetroSaudi was also negotiating to buy out the Taib controlled bank, UBG.

At the time Nik Faisal was 1MDB’s Chief Investment Officer.

But, astonishingly, he also held the post of Executive Director of Investments for UBG.

Jho Low, meanwhile, was a member of the Board of the bank, having headed a substantial share acquisition a few months earlier.

Correspondence shows that Nik Faisal was looped into extensive discussions with PetroSaudi over what was described as “Project Uganda”.

This project appeared to be focused around the loans to PetroSaudi and also the buy out of UBG – given that the correspondence on “Project Uganda” email network referred to both these topics only.

It raises questions over whether Nik Faisal was essentially UBG’s ‘man inside’ 1MDB at this crucial negotiating time – acting as an effective cat’s paw for Jho Low?