by RAHIMI YUNUS / pic by BERNAMA
The application letter for a RM3.95 billion loan by 1Malaysia Development Bhd’s (1MDB) subsidiary SRC International Sdn Bhd did not meet the requirements of Retirement Fund Inc’s (KWAP) investment policy, according to the fund’s former CEO.
The prosecution’s 38th witness Datuk Azian Mohd Noh (picture) testified at the Kuala Lumpur (KL) High Court yesterday that the letter, dated June 3, 2011, had failed to meet the requirements as it was addressed to the former Prime Minister (PM) cum Finance Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Razak, instead of KWAP.
Azian said based on loan policies, the borrower must submit the loan application to KWAP and attach it with supporting documents or loan paperworks, before the Fixed Income
Department performs due diligence. The 66-year-old witness said on the 19th day of the trial that she received the application letter by hand from the late Datuk Seri Azlin Alias, the former principal private secretary to the former PM, on a night after work at a hotel lobby in KL Sentral.
The two-page letter was signed by former SRC International CEO Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil, with Najib’s handwritten note dated June 5, 2011, stating “Bersetuju dengan cadangan ini (agree with this proposal)”.
“So, did this letter meet (the requirements of) KWAP’s investment policy?” deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Datuk Ishak Mohd Yusoff asked.
Azian said: “The letter did not meet the policy according to Paragraph 10 of the witness statement (as the application has to be made to KWAP).”
“Why did you not reject the letter outright then when you received it from Azlin that night?” Ishak further asked.
Azian said: “I could not decipher the content, of the letter that night. I could read the content but I could not determine whether it had met KWAP’s policies and requirements at that time.”
She testified that the meeting went on for 45 minutes that night.
Azian also said she and former KWAP chairman Tan Sri Wan Abdul Aziz Wan Abdullah, who was also a former Treasury secretary general, met Najib to inform that KWAP had agreed to provide the RM1 billion facility only after being reviewed by its investment panel.
Nonetheless, KWAP issued RM2 billion offer letter to SRC International on Aug 23, 2011, after deliberating in a special investment panel meeting.
SRC International requested for an additional RM2 billion, which was offered on March 23 the next year, the court was told earlier.
Earlier in the morning, 1MDB former chairman Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin made his maiden appearance in the court for the SRC International trial.
Two former 1MDB directors, Lodin and the state wealth fund’s former CEO Datuk Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi appeared in the court for the first time to be identified by the prosecution’s 37th witness, Datuk Dr Shamsul Anwar Sulaiman.
The witness, who is Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd MD, was also made to identify the company’s finance director Datuk Abdul Aziz Ismail.
Dr Shamsul Anwar testified that he and Najib had close communications, including on WhatsApp mobile application.
He told the court that Ihsan Perdana transferred RM27 million and RM5 million on Dec 26, 2014, and RM10 million on Feb 9, 2015 — totalling RM42 million — to two accounts with AmBank Group.
That two AmBank accounts had previously been established as Najib’s personal bank accounts.
He said he would have asked Najib about the RM42 million transfer if he knew the funds went to the former PM’s bank accounts.
Meanwhile, DPP Datuk V Sithambaram argued that cross-examination had gone far from the charges and subject matters including details of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) programmes.
In turn, defence counsel Harvinderjit Singh argued that his questions were relevant based on the witness statement, in order to dispel impressions that those programmes were executed only in Umno or Barisan Nasional areas.
Dr Shamsul Anwar said the CSR programmes by Ihsan Perdana were organised nationwide and not confined to any political party’s constituents.
Najib is facing seven charges of criminal breach of trust, money laundering and power abuse involving RM42 million allegedly misappropriated from SRC International.