Muhyiddin part of ‘politically-motivated attack’ on 1MDB, firm says


(Malay Mail Online) – 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) accused former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin of being part of a “politically-motivated attack” on the state-owned company by describing it as “debt-laden”.

The company added that Muhyiddin should be well aware that its assets surpassed its debt, making the label “debt-laden” misleading, as the latter was in the Cabinet when the firm was first formed.

“The characterisation of 1MDB as a ‘debt-laden’ company is misleading, as Muhyiddin, a former Cabinet member, knows full well that the value of 1MDB’s assets exceeds its debt

“It is now clear that this is part of a deliberate and politically-motivated attack, to sabotage not only our previously planned energy IPO but the ongoing implementation of our rationalisation plan,” 1MDB was quoted by daily New Straits Times as saying in a statement today.

The firm said its many assets as well as the sale of several of its subsidiaries makes 1MDB stable, adding that many other companies have used their “debts” to build their businesses.

“This fact is reinforced by the significant value indicated by local and international investors for the ongoing sale of equity in Edra Energy and Bandar Malaysia. Many businesses, both in Malaysia and abroad, have used debt to successfully build their asset base.

“With RM1 million in equity from its shareholder, the Finance Ministry, 1MDB raised capital on the markets — which is the debt on the company’s accounts,” it said.

Despite the criticism levelled against it, 1MDB said it will go ahead with its rationalisation plan as presented to the Cabinet on May 29.

Muhyiddin was dropped from Cabinet in a revamp last July, ostensibly due to his public criticism of Putrajaya over its handling of the 1MDB controversy.

In a statement Wednesday, Muhyiddin said the onus was now on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak as the head of the government to respond to a rare statement by the Conference of Malay Rulers demanding speedy action over 1MDB.

Failure by the authorities to take action over wrongdoings uncovered will further erode the public’s confidence in Putrajaya, Muhyiddin said, echoing the Malay Rulers’ concerns of a possible crisis of credibility over the government’s inaction over 1MDB.

In a statement issued on Tuesday by the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal, Datuk Seri Syed Danial Syed Ahmad, the Malay Rulers said that investigations into 1MDB must be made public in order to show that nothing was being hidden in the probe on the state-owned investment firm.

Improper handling of the 1MDB controversy and related investigations could also affect the economy and even threaten national security, the rulers said.

This is the first time the Conference of Malay Rulers has issued a public statement on the 1MDB controversy that has gained international attention.