Azalina to speak for Najib over RM2.6 billion donation, say sources

Azalina-Othman 1mdb

(The Malaysian Insider) – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak will not personally answer queries in Parliament today on the RM2.6 billion deposited into his bank accounts in early 2013, sources told The Malaysian Insider.

Instead, that task is believed to have been given to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Azalina Othman.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported in July that Malaysian investigators had traced hundreds of millions of dollars of deposits into Najib’s personal bank accounts after the movement of cash among agencies, banks and companies linked to state investment firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

After the WSJ expose, there has been a clamour for the prime minister to explain where he got the money from and what it was used for.

The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Agency (MACC) had said the money in Najib’s account was a donor contribution that originated from the Middle East.

The prime minister was supposed to answer those questions in Parliament today, more than five months after the WSJ expose, but critics argued that even if he turned up, there will not be enough time to answer all queries.

Azalina had previously said that the issue would be answered during question time but it was noted that there will be little chance for the MPs to seek clarifications on any explanations given, as today is the last day of the Parliament sitting.

“If the prime minister answers today, there will be continuous questions. Don’t you think it is fairer to accumulate all the questions on the last day?” she reportedly had said.

“Whether the prime minister will answer or anyone in the Prime Minister’s Department, it is still the prerogative of the prime minister.”