A FORMER director of Ultra Kirana Sdn Bhd (UKSB) today told the High Court in Shah Alam, Selangor, that his company was paying cash in Singapore dollars on a monthly basis to former deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi from 2014 to 2018 in relation to the Foreign Visa System (VLN) Contract.
Harry Lee said the payment to Ahmad Zahid which started with S$200,000 (RM633,587.85) per month and began in late 2014 was increased to S$520,000 per month some time 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 (Ahmad Zahid) house in Country Heights, Kajang, Selangor, and in that meeting, Datuk Seri Zahid (Ahmad Zahid) requested that the monthly contribution be increased. After discussing with Wan Quoris (Wan Quiros 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 examination-in-chief by deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Abdul Malik Ayob at the trial of Ahmad Zahid who is facing 40 corruption charges.
The 15th prosecution witness added they came up with that figure because Ahmad Zahid had mentioned that the 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,” he said.
The third prosecution witness, former Home Ministry Immigration Affairs Division deputy secretary Siti Jalilah Abd Manap had previously told the court that Ahmad 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 Datuk Raja Rozela Raja Toran, if he could recall how many times he had delivered (cash money) between 2014 and 2018, he replied: “70% 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 (Ahmad 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 Shah and Tan) why?
Harry Lee: I’m not sure, but from day one it had been set that way (meeting with Ahmad Zahid) and I just followed.
He added that in the 40 times he had delivered the money, Ahmad Zahid had never returned them.
Ahmad Zahid, 69, is facing 33 charges of receiving bribes amounting to S$13.56 million from UKSB for himself as home minister to extend the contract of the company as the operator of one-stop centre service in China and the supply VLN system as well as to maintain the contract agreement to supply the VLN integrated system to the same company by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
For another seven counts, he was charged with obtaining for himself S$1.15 million, RM3 million, €15,000 (RM69,308.24) and US$15,000 (RM65,932.50) from the same company which has official links with his official duty.
He was 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 Datuk Mohd Yazid Mustafa continues later today. — Bernama