Najib prefers Saudi royal donation than from local corporate donors

by BERNAMA/ pic by BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (picture) told the High Court here today that he preferred donations from the Saudi royal family instead of from local corporate donors.

The 67-year-old Pekan Member of Parliament said he felt more comfortable by not taking corporate donations as he did not want to feel indebted to anyone.

“As the UMNO president at that time, I wanted a source of income to make me independent of other donors, that would mean I do not have an IOU (I owe you) with anyone,” said the former finance minister when  re-examined by his lawyer, Harvinderjit Singh.

Najib  said the RM2.6 billion donation from the Saudi royal family was to ensure “independence” in the run-up to the 13th General Election.

To another question, Najib said his bank accounts with AmBank were opened in 2010, following a suggestion by fugitive businessman Jho Low, or Low Taek Jho,  to facilitate the transfer involving large amount of money from the Saudi royal family.

Najib’s lead counsel, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah today, wrapped up his re-examination against Najib.

High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali then allowed Najib to be released from the witness stand.

Najib had been testifying from the witness stand since Dec 3 last year in the defence trial.

He is making his defence on seven charges of misappropriating RM42 million in SRC International Sdn Bhd funds, comprising three counts of criminal breach of trust, three counts of money laundering  and one count of abuse of position in relation to the SRC funds.

The hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan continues.