DPM: Edra sold to China company to forestall bailout accusations
(Malay Mail Online) – Putrajaya decided to sell state-owned Edra Global Energy Bhd to China General Nuclear Power Corp (CGN) instead of local power giant Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) to nip allegations that the government was trying to bail out its previous owner, 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said tonight.
The deputy prime minister said questions concerning Edra’s sale to a foreign firm had been raised earlier in the evening during a closed-door by Umno delegates and had been clarified by their party president and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
According to Ahmad Zahid, Najib explained that the government accepted CGN’s RM17 billion offer for Edra because TNB had bidded lower.
“If TNB would have been given the offer, it would have been said as a bailout,” he told a press conference at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) here, where the annual Umno general assembly will take place this week.
Ahmad Zahid added that the government held a fair and open international tender in which the “highest bidder won”.
He further said that Najib also addressed the thorny issue of a RM2.6 billion donation he received from a foreign donor, telling delegates the donor did not expect anything in return.
“The party which has given the political donation has not expected anything in return,” Ahmad Zahid said, and added that Najib had already provided details to the donor’s identity to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.
In the closed door briefing, the DPM said Najib also spoke on the economic crisis that the country is facing and vouched that the country is doing well despite the criticisms against the government.
“He gave facts to the delegates so that they can hear from him personally. The response from them had been positive,” Ahmad Zahid said.