The RM2.6 billion is not the first


One very interesting development is about the wife (or one of the wives) of the Director for Special Operations of the MACC, Bahri Mohamad Zin, being in financial trouble. It seems her business is in dire straits and that is why he is attacking Najib all out. The question is how bad is his financial problem and how much is he being paid? Yes, a most interesting question indeed.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

The issue of the Arabs, Middle Eastern or North African donors giving money to their friends and allies to help finance certain causes is not something new. This has been going on since 1974 and some of it has actually attracted some controversy. And it is not just Saudi Arabia that is involved. Even some countries such as Libya whom the West considers as ‘rouge nations’ do it.

Of course, since the RM2.6 billion-controversy exploded onto the Malaysian scene in mid-2015, everyone has suddenly become aware of the issue. It is as if a secret has all of a sudden become exposed.

I suppose that is like Malaysians ‘suddenly’ becoming aware of Anwar Ibrahim’s sex life on 1st September 1998. Actually many Malaysians already knew about Anwar’s secret life long before 1st September 1998.

The one-time IGP, Tun Mohammed Hanif Omar, actually went to see Anwar to talk to him about it. Hanif advised Anwar to ‘tone down’ because too many people were already aware and the police had a file on the matter. So it was no surprise when Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad went before the nation to inform Malaysians as to why he needed to sack Anwar.

Of course, many Malaysians did not believe the allegation and thought that Dr Mahathir was lying. That was because they became aware of this only when Dr Mahathir told them about it. But to those of us who had known for years about what was going on we just sighed and accepted the fact that finally Anwar had got caught.

Actually the RM2.6 billion issue was no secret and it was not RM2.6 billion. It is something that happened in 2013 although it was only two years later that most Malaysians knew about it. And you cannot move such a large amount like RM2.6 billion without a few people knowing about it, Bank Negara included.

Bank Negara did not discover this after the fact. Bank Negara was kept in the loop from the very beginning and even before the money was moved. And Bank Negara’s advice was sought as to how to move that much money without getting into trouble.

If you notice one thing, no one is talking about the illegal transfer of money. No one is talking about money smuggled into Malaysia. The legality of how the money was brought into Malaysia is not in question. What is being questioned is where the money came from and whether it was stolen either directly or indirectly from 1MDB.

Was this RM2.6 billion or whatever the real amount is the first time Arab money was transferred into Malaysia? And is Najib the first Malaysian to ever receive such a large amount of money from the Arabs? Actually Najib is not the first and the RM2.6 billion is also not the first and in total about RM600 billion has been moved all over the world since 1974. And that is only from Saudi Arabia. We are not yet talking about the other Middle Eastern countries, Libya included.

Dr Mahathir, Muhyiddin Yassin, and all those others knew about this RM2.6 billion. It was not a secret that they suddenly discovered. And for them to expose the issue in the hope that this would bring down Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak is a very risky exercise.

It is a risky exercise because it opens up a can of worms. And this can of worms goes way back to the 1970s long before Dr Mahathir became Prime Minister and when Anwar was still with ABIM and not yet in Umno. If this can of worms is not kept closed and is opened for all and sundry to see then the money that Libya sent to Malaysia to fund the Jihadists in the Philippines and Thailand would become public knowledge.

Actually, the Philippines and Thai governments already know about it. It is not quite a secret. It is just that being neighbours they do not want to embarrass Malaysia by talking about it. They even know about the training camps that General Hassan ran to train the Thai and Filipino Jihadists.

So you see, this has been going on for the last 40 years or so. The Middle Eastern countries have been sending billions into Malaysia to help finance certain causes. And some of these causes during the time of Dr Mahathir and Anwar were to finance, train and equip terrorist organisations operating in our neighbouring countries — and who are supposed to be our friends.

Do you think Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Muhyiddin Yassin, Anwar Ibrahim, Dr Wan Azizah Ismail, Abdul Hadi Awang, Mat Sabu, Lim Kit Siang, etc., are shocked, surprised or perturbed about the story of the RM2.6 billion? Of course not! At least that money has not gone into financing Jihadists in our neighbouring countries.

Let me tell you a story. This happened in 2001. I was already about one month under ISA detention when one of the Special Branch officers asked me whether I knew a certain person in Thailand. He then told me the name of that person, one of the leaders of the Pattani United Liberation Organisation or PULO.

I knew that this Special Branch officer knew that I knew this Thai chap so it was no point lying. So I confessed that I knew him. The Special Branch officer then asked me how I knew this PULO chap and I told him that one of Anwar Ibrahim’s people introduced us.

The Special Branch officer then told me that the PULO chap had contacted him and told him that they heard I had been detained and he wanted to know if the Special Branch could arrange a meeting.

Of course they could not arrange the meeting but that revealed one very important point. And that point is PULO is in contact and is in talking terms with Malaysia’s Special Branch — meaning the Malaysian government. And the PULO army was being trained in Terengganu and Kelantan and the financing came from the Middle East.

So did these people really not know about the RM2.6 billion and are really shocked, surprised and perturbed about the matter? This is all a big wayang. Of course they knew about it. In fact, they also knew about the many other billions that have been donated since 1974.

Do you think only Umno receives this money? And do you think Najib is the first in Umno to receive this money? Ask DAP how much they received and where the money came from. Ask PAS how much they received and where the money came from.

In fact, ask PAS how much Muammar Gaddafi of Libya gave them to finance their political activities and the elections. I am sure people like Mat Sabu would be very happy to sing like a canary. Or will Mat Sabu not dare talk because some of that money went into his pocket?

Dr Mahathir and his ANC (Anti-Najib Campaign) are taking a huge risk by playing up the RM2.6 billion-issue. Do you remember back when Dr Mahathir was Prime Minister and Abdul Aziz Shamsuddin, Dr Mahathir’s one-time political secretary, was the Deputy Minister of Education?

Well, that was the time when a band of Filipino terrorists (who were once trained by Malaysia in Sabah) kidnapped some tourists from Sabah. Aziz, who was not the Defence Minister or Home Minister but just the Deputy Education Minister, was sent to the Philippines to negotiate with the terrorists.

After that a planeload of money from Libya arrived in Sabah and was handed to the Filipinos, after which the hostages were released. Malaysia, of course, denied paying any ransom although 100 people saw the plane land and boxes of cash from Libya being transported out of the plane.

I bet Dr Mahathir or Aziz did not talk to Bank Negara first before transferring that huge amount of money into Malaysia and then using it to pay terrorists operating in our neighbouring country.

I know that the ANC is desperate. The 1MDB issue is a non-starter. So they need the RM2.6 billion-issue to work. If not they would have hardly anything to use against Najib. But by playing up this RM2.6 billion issue they run the risk of getting exposed on those other billions before this that was smuggled into Malaysia. And some of this was used to finance terrorism.

Do Dr Mahathir and his ANC really want to take that risk?

One very interesting development is about the wife (or one of the wives) of the Director for Special Operations of the MACC, Bahri Mohamad Zin, being in financial trouble. It seems her business is in dire straits and that is why he is attacking Najib all out. The question is how bad is his financial problem and how much is he being paid? Yes, a most interesting question indeed.