Zahid received millions every month for 4 years
“After discussing with Wan Quoris and David Tan, we agreed to increase the amount from S$300,000 to S$520,000 per month,” he said.
(FMT) – A former director of Ultra Kirana Sdn Bhd (UKSB) told the High Court here today that his company made millions in cash payments, in Singapore dollars, to former deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi from 2014 to 2018 over the Foreign Visa System (VLN) contract.
Harry Lee said the payments to Zahid, which started with S$200,000 per month and began in late 2014, increased to S$520,000 per month in 2017.
“If I can recall correctly, the payment of S$200,000 per month began in late 2014 and continued until mid-2015.
“Around that time, we went to his (Zahid’s) house in Country Heights, Kajang, and in that meeting Datuk Seri Zahid requested that the monthly ‘contribution’ be increased. After discussing with Wan Quoris (Shah Wan Abdul Ghani) and David Tan, we agreed to a sum of S$300,000 per month.
“Later in 2017, Datuk Seri Zahid requested to see us in his private residence. In that meeting also, Datuk Seri Zahid requested that the monthly payment be increased due to the upcoming general election.
“After discussing with Wan Quoris and David Tan, we agreed to increase the amount from S$300,000 to S$520,000 per month,” he said while reading his witness statement during the examination-in-chief by deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Abdul Malik Ayob at the trial of Zahid, who is facing 40 corruption charges.
The 15th prosecution witness added that they came up with that figure because Zahid had said that Umno divisions needed financial support.
“In our discussion, we agreed to a sum of about RM10,000 per division for the 100-odd Umno divisions and after conversion, the total sum came up to S$520,000 per month,” Lee said.
The third prosecution witness, former home ministry immigration affairs division deputy secretary Siti Jalilah Abd Manap, had previously told the court that Zahid had extended the UKSB contract for the VLN project even though the existing contract was valid for three more years.
When asked a supplementary question by DPP Raja Rozela Raja Toran if he could recall how many times he delivered the cash between 2014 and 2018, Lee replied: “Seventy per cent of the process was done by me… 40 times in four years.”
Raja Rozela: Can you recall, who did you go with to deliver the money at Country Heights, Kajang (Zahid’s house)?
Lee: With Wan Quoris and David Tan.
Raja Rozela: In your statement you said that the money was handed over by you alone, but you went together (with Wan Quoris and David Tan). Why?
Lee: I’m not sure, but from day one it had been set that way (meeting with Zahid) and I just followed.
He added that in the 40 times that he delivered the money, Zahid had never returned it.
Zahid, 68, is facing 33 charges of receiving bribes amounting to S$13.56 million (RM42 million) from UKSB as an inducement for himself in his capacity as a civil servant and the then home minister to extend the contract of the company as the operator of the One-Stop Centre (OSC) in China and the VLN system as well as to maintain the agreement to supply VLN integrated system paraphernalia to the same company by the home ministry.
For another seven counts, Zahid was charged as home minister to have obtained for himself S$1,150,000, RM3 million, €15,000 and US$15,000 in cash from the same company in connection with his official work.
He is charged with committing all the offences at Seri Satria, Presint 16, Putrajaya, and Country Heights, Kajang, between October 2014 and March 2018.
The trial before judge Yazid Mustafa continues.