MACC: Najib had RM78k monthly salary but RM3.217 billion entered his personal accounts

(MMO) – Datuk Seri Najib Razak had a monthly income of over RM78,000 when he was formerly both prime minister and finance minister of Malaysia, an investigating officer from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) told the High Court here.

MACC investigating officer Senior Superintendent Nur Aida Arifin was testifying as the 49th prosecution witness in Najib’s trial over the misappropriation of over RM2.2 billion of alleged 1Malaysia Development Berhad-linked (1MDB) funds said to have entered his private AmIslamic bank accounts.

“As prime minister and finance minister, Datuk Seri Najib received wages totalling RM58,605.15 and later received an allowance as a Member of Parliament and Dewan Rakyat leader totalling RM19,846.59. The total income received by Datuk Seri Najib is RM78,451.74 per month,” she told the High Court.

Najib was first appointed as prime minister on April 3, 2009 and continued to hold this post until the 2018 elections, and was the finance minister from September 17, 2008 until 2018.

Nur Aida said MACC’s investigations on the misappropriation of 1MDB funds had begun in August 2015 and she was the assistant investigating officer then, before being appointed as investigating officer on May 14, 2018 for the investigations.

She said she had personally signed a May 17, 2018 complaint to enable investigations to be carried out under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009, with her complaint relating to information received over Najib’s alleged receiving of RM3.217 billion of 1MDB investment funds in his private AmBank account allegedly for his personal interests.

Nur Aida later said her investigations showed that Najib had committed an offence under Section 23 where a total of more than RM3.63 billion entered his two private bank accounts (codenamed AmPrivate Banking-MR and AmPrivateBanking-1MY) and with around RM2.282 billion of that amount being the subject matter of her investigation.

At this point, Najib’s lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah voiced his objection to Nur Aida’s testimony by saying that she was making comments and making conclusions when only the court can make the final conclusion.

Trial judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah recorded the objection which he would deal with at a later stage of the trial, and suggested the witness could rephrase.

Deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib however said Nur Aida’s testimony was based on her findings from her investigations, and said he would be showing documents to her at a later stage of the trial and ask her to explain her testimony.

Nur Aida then continued testifying, with Shafee regularly raising his objections — including Nur Aida’s alleged reliance on hearsay or her alleged summarising and drawing of conclusions of events that happened in relation to 1MDB — for the judge to record and to decide later on.