Friday, June 8, 2012

Corruption and inflation – how they affect the economy

Corruption and inflation – how they affect the economy

 

Saturday December 17, 2011

Corruption and inflation – how they affect the economy






COMMENT BY QUAH BOON HUAT













THE issue of corruption has always been in the news, but more so recently. It actually led to a somewhat heated debate with a colleague recently on whether public sector corruption contributes towards inflationary pressures. More on that later.

“Graft fuels Indonesia's infrastructure woes: Analysts”, says a recent news report from AFP, the global news agency. The sudden collapse of Indonesia's longest suspension bridge in November, which killed more than 20 people, had triggered the report.

Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index ranks countries according to how corrupt their public service is perceived to be.

According to Transparency International-Malaysia, Malaysia took 60th spot this year, a drop of four places from last year. It scored 4.3 on the survey, far behind Singapore (9.3) and Brunei (6.3). Malaysia is among 60% of the countries surveyed that scored below five, and its underperformance has certainly whipped up debates about the seriousness of public sector corruption in Malaysia.

In an immediate response to Transparency International-Malaysia's announcement of the 2011 Corruption Perception Index, the Government's Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu) announced that it is pursuing corruption-related issues very seriously. That's because corruption can mean failure for both the Government Transformation Programme and the Economic Transformation Programme.



Below are some examples of how corruption can affect long-term economic growth and development:
1. Corruption has a negative impact on productivity, which is absolutely critical for sustainable long-term economic growth, because it raises the costs of doing business. The AFP news report on graft in Indonesia reported that a “World Bank analysis found corruption could add up to 20% to the existing costs of projects in Indonesia.”


2. Corruption deters investments because it is comparable to a tax on investments. For example, the AFP news report on Indonesia reported the London-based risk consultancy Business Monitor International as saying that “high levels of corruption have severely impeded investment in the country's infrastructure from non-public sources”.


3. Corruption causes inefficient resource allocation because decisions of public officials or politicians will be biased towards transactions that offer more opportunities to strike corrupt deals. Resources would thus be wasted on projects that have no economic basis.

Coming back to my debate with my colleague, does public sector corruption contribute towards inflationary pressures? What does economic theory say?



As corruption is a very broad, complex phenomenon, and not every type of corruption may have the same economic effect, it may be useful here to differentiate between the different types of corruption:

a) grand corruption (which involves large sums of money, senior officials, and major decisions) and petty corruption (which involves small sums of money, low-level officials, and the provision of routine goods and services);


b) systemic corruption (which permeates an entire agency, ministry, or even government) and individual corruption (which is isolated and sporadic); and,


c) syndicated corruption (in which there is an elaborate system to receive and disseminate bribes) and non-syndicated corruption (in which individual officials seek bribes on an ad hoc and uncoordinated basis).
It is obvious from the above that the economic impacts of grand corruption, systemic corruption, and syndicated corruption can be significant because of their scale. One would expect them to have a larger economic impact, e.g. inflationary pressures, when compared to petty corruption, individual corruption or non-syndicated corruption.


According to simple economic theory, corruption, which is a form of tax, decreases aggregate supply. That is, it shifts the economy's positively-sloped aggregate supply curve to the left. Assuming that the economy's negatively-sloped aggregate demand curve remains stationary, the aggregate supply curve's leftward shift implies a rise in the aggregate price level.

Mounting public sector expenses as a result of corrupt public sector officials siphoning off public funds meant for development can lead to the government printing money to finance the country's budget deficit.

Economic theory says that such a move would raise aggregate demand, i.e. shift the economy's negatively sloped aggregate demand curve to the right. Assuming that the economy's positively-sloped aggregate supply curve remains stationary, the aggregate demand curve's rightward shift implies a rise in the aggregate price level. Zimbabwe's recent episode of hyperinflation is a case in point. Some blame it on the government's printing at will worthless currency to try pay its way out of trouble.

Economic theory thus says that public sector corruption contributes towards inflationary pressures. The degree of contribution however will depend on the scale and extent of corruption that's taking place, e.g. whether corruption is institutionalised. Institutionalised corruption in Zimbabwe has been blamed for the country's recent inflation woes.

Corruption is insidious. It may seem harmless to those who do not come into direct contact with it. But we are all affected by corruption; for example, you “pay” for it in terms of higher prices when you shop at your favourite convenience store.

In the long term, your children and their children will continue to pay for corruption in terms of higher prices; in addition, they will pay for it in terms of a lower standard of living.



> The writer is research fellow at the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (Mier). Opinions expressed here should not be attributed to Mier.























http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2011/12/17/business/10108355&sec=business













Corruption and inflation – how they affect the economy














Brain drain = FDI drought












http://www.mier.org.my/newsarticles/archives/pdf/quah17_8_2010.pdf






Malaysian Institute of Economic Research












































































Author: Quah Boon Huat 
The economy in reverse

The Malaysian economy was not spared any damage in 2008, a year that will be remembered as a period of turbulence, when a deadly cocktail of bad US sub-prime loans, the financial-liquidity crisis, high commodity prices and soaring inflation buffeted the global economy.
Against a backdrop of quarter-by-quarter falls in the country’s economic growth rate, 2008 was more about rare economic highlights than milestones.
In early 2008, Malaysia’s last two economic corridors, the Sabah Development Corridor and the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy were launched to bring further social and economic development to the economically backward states of Sabah and Sarawak in East Malaysia. These economic corridors, including the three launched earlier in Peninsular Malaysia – Iskandar Malaysia, the Northern Corridor Economic Region and the East Coast Economic Region – aim to ensure a more regionally balanced socio-economic development of the nation. There are, however, criticisms of the speed of implementating projects.
In early June the government announced that it would remove controls on the price of petrol and allow fluctuating prices; a move that was unprecedented, given that the surge in global oil prices resulted in a ballooning fuel subsidies bill. Petrol subsidies were not totally removed, only decreased, and petrol pump prices were revised from time to time to reflect market price movements.
In December, the government announced that it would set a ceiling price at RM2.70 a litre, and give a subsidy of 30 sen per litre if the market price moved above RM1.90 a litre. Any fall in the market price to below RM1.90 a litre will result in the imposition of a tax, the quantum of which is still being discussed.
The central bank’s Overnight Policy Rate was kept at 3.50 per cent over the first three quarters of 2008, even though GDP quarterly growth had been moderating successively, from 7.1 per cent to 6.7 per cent to 4.7 per cent. In November, the central bank finally reduced its OPR by 25 basis points to 3.25 per cent.
Recently published third quarter data indicate that the country’s overall balance of payments recorded a deficit of RM31.5 billion, as compared to a surplus of RM26.2 billion in the previous quarter. This deficit was due largely to a significant drop of RM61.5 billion in the capital and financial account. In the previous quarter, the drop had been just RM12.3 billion. The current account balance, on the other hand, remained positive with a surplus of RM38.7 billion, a slight increase from the surplus of RM37 billion recorded in the previous quarter.
The fuel subsidy cut in June resulted in inflation soaring to 7.7 per cent in that month, compared to 3.8 per cent in the previous month. Compounded by escalating food prices, the inflation rate rose further to 8.5 per cent in July. By November, the inflation rate eased to 5.7 per cent.
In November, Malaysia finally announced a 7 billion-ringgit economic stimulus package to avert recession in 2009. The package has been criticized by some quarters as too late, and too little to adequately contain the impact of the global economic crisis on Malaysia. Criticism has also been leveled at how the 7 billion ringgit will be spent, as the package will go mostly to towards the construction and upgrading of low-cost housing units, schools, roads and public amenities.
Political tsunami
The results of Malaysia’s 12th general election on 8th March 2008, which has been hailed as a ‘political tsunami,’ a ‘political near-revolution’, and one that its citizens will be talking about for years, revealed an immense groundswell of public opinion against the ruling government and/or a rejection of race-based politics. Liberals regard it as a new dawn for democracy in Malaysia, a positive move towards constructive political development, and good for the nation’s long-term future.
For the first time since Malaysia gained its independence in 1957, the ruling coalition government lost its crucial two-thirds supermajority, which for a long time had enabled it to amend the constitution at will to its own advantage. On top of that, the government lost five of 13 state legislatures, as compared to only one in the 2004 election.
For the quiet Malaysian, the political change had been long in coming. There have been persistent complaints that the government has not done enough to tackle massive institutionalized corruption, issues of poor governance, non-tranparency, ethnicised politicking, and religious and ethnic insensitivities. Many share the view that the government has lost touch with the very people who voted them in.
The message of the loose coalition of opposition parties was loud and clear: that they are a viable alternative, and would tackle the issues uppermost in people’s minds. The success of the opposition alliance can be attributed to its ability to use new technologies such as blogs, mobile phone text messages and YouTube during the 2008 election, a milestone in Malaysian politics, to circumvent tight media control by the government.
Malaysia appears to have been forced by the success of the opposition parties in the 2008 election to embark on a bout of democracy. Already there are signs of change within the ruling coalition, as change will be necessary to its continued political survival.
But after a half century in power, it is hard to change, and there is much internal resistance to it, so UMNO’s days may at last be numbered.

Quah Boon Huat is a research fellow at the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER). Prior to joining MIER, he worked in the banking and stockbroking industry.








































The ugly face of money politics is back





































Broken Promises: The Malaysian Constitution and Multiculturalism

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malay Rights v Special Position

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overcome racism, extremism to flourish, Guan Eng tells Penangites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christians must fight the Good Fight: Declare war on Ibrahim Ali and Umno!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Home Minister Hishamuddin Hussein Onn's Brother, Haris, Still Owns 180,000 Shares in Liberal Technology

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malaysia's POLITICAL ROYAL FAMILY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Desperate Dr M forced to praise inept Najib or Umno will sink like a stone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Incorrigible, recalcitrant, Dictator Mahathir Mohamad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Corruption of Mahathir?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 1997-98 Malaysian economic crisis: A mess of Mahathir's making

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No Political-Will to Eradicate Corruption! Merely Lip-Service lah!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sons of Prime Minister Najib & Ex-Minister of Law Dato Seri Nazri Caught Womanizing and Drinking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Make-Up of the Malaysian Judiciary: Who We Appoint to the Seat of Justice is a Matter of LIFE and DEATH for Malaysians

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Legitimacy of the judiciary: Political foes, BN businessman and you — William Leong Jee Keen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Businessman compares ECM Libra controversy with deals involving sons of Dr M, Najib

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malaysia's 6 prime ministers: When did the corruption and racism start?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why deals like the Scorpenes-Altantuya don't help Malaysia, only Najib

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Crony Nation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Father of Transformation or Father of Corruption: Look again at the CPI slide

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glum economic outlook nudges Najib closer to polls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

M'sia the 4th most corrupt nation in the world but not a sound from Najib

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The tragedy that is Umno

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unlike Taiwan's KMT, Umno is a financial pauper, squeezed dry by its own leaders

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Great Dictator's Final Speech

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Electoral reform a farce without free and fair media coverage — Kim Quek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE PREDATORS THAT BRING SHAME TO MALAYSIA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NFC: ‘Whistleblower’ reveals himself

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Corruption of Mahathir?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 







Be brave, Karpal tells Najib

Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA! 















By now, Umno-BN the most corrupt regime in ASEAN with largest stash of illicit outflows

 Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BRUNO MANSER FUND, BASEL, SWITZERLAND

12th June 2012 – for immediate release

Bruno Manser Fund files complaint under criminal law against UBS over laundering of Malaysian timber corruption proceeds – Swiss banking giant accused of assisting Musa Aman, Chief Minister of the Malaysian state of Sabah, with money-laundering
(ZURICH/SWITZERLAND) Swiss bank UBS is likely to face criminal proceedings over its business ties with a Malaysian top politician following the filing of a complaint under criminal law by the Bruno Manser Fund, a rainforest advocacy group from Switzerland. The Bruno Manser Fund announced today that it has filed a complaint against UBS with Zurich’s Public Prosecutor over the bank’s ties with Musa Aman, a Malaysian politician who controls logging in Sabah, a Malaysian state in North Borneo. The complaint has been filed on behalf of the Bruno Manser Fund by professor Monika Roth, a lawyer and well-known Swiss compliance expert.
The Bruno Manser Fund accuses UBS of having breached its due diligence duties as defined by the Swiss Criminal Code and calls on Swiss authorities to take criminal action against UBS and those responsible for the bank’s relationship with Musa Aman. The Malaysian politician has been Chief Minister of Sabah since 2003 and is the brother of Malaysia’s Foreign Minister, Anifah Aman. He is being accused of having laundered over USD 90 million of corruption proceeds through a number of bank accounts with UBS in Hong Kong and Zurich. In April 2012, the Swiss Federal Office of Justice confirmed that Switzerland has given legal assistance to Hong Kong authorities over Musa’s ties with UBS.
Numerous documents handed in as evidence to the Zurich Public Prosecutor’s Office prove that Michael Chia, a close associate of the Sabah Chief Minister, organized large cash payments from timber companies with logging interests in Sabah to UBS bank accounts in Hong Kong. From the same accounts, payments have been made to Musa Aman’s sons in Australia and to Mohd Daud Tampokong, a senior forestry official from Sabah.
The complaint alleges that Malaysian lawyer Richard Christopher Barnes, to whose accounts millions of US dollars were transferred, acted as a “shaker and mover” for the Sabah Chief Minister. By way of an example, on 21 August 2006, one of Barnes’ accounts with UBS in Hong Kong was credited with USD 4.6 million paid only days earlier by Sabah timber tycoons into another UBS account controlled by Michael Chia.
“UBS plays a key role in everything, given that many of the relevant transactions in this case passed through this bank, and its employee, Dennis Chua, a former client advisor with HSBC in Hong Kong, was actively involved”, the complaint states. “It is, however, evident that other financial institutions in Asia and possibly in Switzerland were involved in this mesh and indeed still are.” The complaint also gives the account numbers of Musa Aman’s personal bank accounts with UBS in Hong Kong and in Zurich.
“How UBS ought to handle banking relationships with politically exposed persons (PEPs) is stated in the law and the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority’s (FINMA) regulations. These rules were blatantly disregarded in that no suitable measures were taken for enforcing them. That makes UBS liable in accordance with the provisions of Art.102 para 2 and Art.305bis of the Swiss Criminal Code.”
The Bruno Manser Fund is asking the Zurich Public Prosecutor to take action in Switzerland under Swiss law against UBS and against UBS employees who have disregarded their due diligence duties in the Musa Aman case. “Moreover, the question is to be asked whether the whole mesh of corruption is to be regarded as a criminal organisation, which would then be linked to the further question of whether the behaviour of UBS were not to be qualified as support for that organisation.”
Corruption is one of the main drivers of deforestation in Sabah and Sarawak, the two Malaysian states on the island of Borneo. Borneo’s rainforests are one of the world’s biodiversity centres and home to endangered species such as the orang utan, the clouded leopard and the proboscis monkey. In 2007, the Malaysian government committed to protect its rainforests by signing the “Heart of Borneo” declaration but it has failed to take action against logging-related corruption by the Sabah and Sarawak state governments under their highly corrupt Chief Ministers, Musa Aman and Taib Mahmud.














NFC: ‘Whistleblower’ reveals himself

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Corruption of Mahathir?























Be brave, Karpal tells Najib

Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA! 















By now, Umno-BN the most corrupt regime in ASEAN with largest stash of illicit outflows

 Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
















WHAT NOW SABAHANS?

Sabah Chief Minister, Musa Aman, branded Sarawak Report maliciously motivated liars and implied we were master forgers, after we revealed financial documents showing that his nominee, Michael Chia, had laundered nearly a hundred million US dollars of timber kickbacks on his behalf.

“Thou call'st me dog before thou hadst a cause, But since I am a dog, beware my fangs”
William Shakespeare.
As such, SARAWAK REPORT now challenge him to name the Swiss bank UBS AG liars as well, because their submissions to a current court case in Singapore confirm our evidence!




























Saturday, 23 June 2012 10:17

Musa Aman and Swiss bank feel the heat: Cashier orders worth MILLIONS of dollars!

Written by Sarawak Report

The complaint in Switzerland against UBS AG, for banking timber kickbacks on behalf Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman, has been transferred from the Zurich public prosecutor to the office of the Attorney General.
This raises the matter to a federal level, indicating the potential seriousness of the case.
It has prompted the country’s weekly business magazine ”Handelszeitung” to reveal further details on the scandal, which is starting to prove highly embarrassing for Switzerland’s leading bank and extremely dangerous for Musa Aman.
Cashier orders worth millions of dollars
One of the key matters now raising eyebrows is the revelation that Michael Chia (Chia Tien Foh) used a series of cashier orders worth millions of dollars each to open his various bank accounts with the UBS branch in Singapore back in 2006.
Altogether, he deposited over $20million in mixed Singapore and US dollar cashier orders, all made out on the same day, April 10th 2006.  The orders, some of which were worth over $5 million, were all issued by HSBC in Singapore and then signed for and accepted by UBS AG’s new ‘Wealth Management Advisor’, Denis Chua, who supervised Chia’s new accounts.
Accepted by UBS advisor Denis Chua - made out by HSBC
Experts have expressed astonishment to Handelszeitung writers that a major bank would have accepted these sorts of cash transfers in such a fashion, without questioning their origin.
Jean-Pierre Méan, Chairman of Transparency International Siwtzerland, is quoted as saying:
“To accept cash cheques in such amounts is highly suspicious and calls for an explanation in every case.”
Likewise, the highly renowned former public prosecutor, Paolo Bernasconi,comments:
“If this is true, it’s an incredible story. Within UBS, the same standards should have been applied worldwide. In 2006, this should never have been possible.”
Meanwhile, Monika Roth, the professor of law who is prosecuting the case of behalf of the Bruno Manser Fund, is adamant that in doing so UBS:
“accepted a money-laundering risk, which is unacceptable and sheds a bad light both on HSBC and UBS as members of the Wolfsberg group”.
HSBC also open to serious criticism
SNG 5million 'only' - the size of the cashier orders which Michael Chia used to open his UBS AG bank accounts in 2006
The reference to the bank HSBC opens a new line of enquiry in this matter that threatens to drag another major international bank into the heart of this scandal.
The series of Cashier’s Orders referred to by the Swiss publication were all signed off by the Chief Cashier of HSBC Singapore on 10th April 2006.
We have established that this was the day that Michael Chia closed down a series of accounts at the bank, some held in Singapore dollars and others in Australian and American dollars.
We hold copies of numerous bank statements relating to these accounts up until this date and those statements bear evidence of substantial payments from Sabah timber interests amounting to millions of dollars.  They also show several payments being made from these accounts to Musa Aman’s sons, who were studying in Australia.
In fact, the activity in the HSBC accounts prior to 2006 is very similar to the activity that is then recorded in the UBS accounts opened after 2006.
Both sets of accounts received large sums of money from companies related to logging concerns in Sabah and paid out money to  Musa’s sons and transferred millions into further accounts that eventually led to Musa Aman himself.
The chart drawn up by Hong Kong investigators - layers of accounts leading from Michael Chia and his associates, to the lawyer Richard Barnes and eventually to Musa
Sarawak Report has established that the same Manager, Denis Chua, worked at both banks.  We understand that after Chua left HSBC for UBS AG in 2006, HSBC examined the Michael Chia accounts and subsequently requested that he remove them!
It was at this point we have been told that Chia received the cash orders, which he then brought to Chua, who signed and stamped their acceptance on behalf of UBS.
No comment
HSBC have so far stone-walled questions about their unconventional behaviour in this matter.  The bank merely told Handelszeitung:
“We cannot comment on cases relating to our customers and their accounts”.
However, they also claimed prevention of money-laundering was a key priority and that they have installed “comprehensive world wide risk management processes” for that reason.
This fails to answer why HSBC apparently closed down a suspect account, but nevertheless allowed the account holder to remove the millions of dollars concerned in a series of massive money orders, signed off on the same day for different amounts by their chief cashier.
One financial expert, speaking to Sarawak Report, has commented:
“This very unusual.  Normally, an account would be closed and the funds simply transferred to another regulated or accredited financial institution.  This method could be said to circumnavigate any traceability of these accounts or their closure and you have to ask why?  Issuing these cashier orders is the equivalent to simply giving cash.  Questions could certainly be raised with regards to issues of money-laundering”
Exclusive! - A third bank, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), was also caught up in Michael Chia's money-web - this million dollar money order was one of several processed by the bank
UBS are also resorting to minimum comment in response to the growing questions about the conduct of their Singapore branch, managed out of Hong Kong by Denis Chua.
However, while insisting that they operate in all markets in line with the regulatory framework, Switzerland’s largest bank did concede to the magazine Handelszeitung:
“Should it turn out that employees have breached the law, UBS will sanction that and will clear the matter in cooperation with the authorities.”
If UBS do finally concede wrong-doing in their dealings with Michael Chia and his web of financial activities it will be time for them to offer full cooperation with the authorities with regard to what these bank accounts were up to.
Client confidentiality should not be allowed to operate as a crooks charter when it comes to the destruction of Sabah’s Borneo Rainforest.
Time for banks who process illegal timber money to come clean or face the consequence
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE AT SARAWAK REPORT




























Skeletons in Sabah’s closet

FMT Staff | June 23, 2012
Already reeling from a spate of scandals, the revelation that foreign authorities have been scrutinising the bank accounts of some well-connected Malaysians adds a new twist to the power struggle in the country.
KUALA LUMPUR:  The spotlight on large sums of unaccountable money linked to Chief Minister Musa Aman going in and out of bank accounts overseas is threatening to crack open the Barisan Nasional’s “fixed deposit” state of Sabah.
Allegations and investigations of shady timber deals and money laundering may be the proverbial ‘last straw’ to shatter the ruling coalition’s hopes of hanging on to power.
Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak has announced that investigations into the alleged money laundering by Sabah timber tycoon Michael Chia has been completed and handed to the Attorney-General’s Chambers.
“The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission has conducted investigations into the Michael Chia case which is linked to the Sabah chief minister.
“It has been completed and presented to the AGC for study and a decision,” Najib said in a written reply in parliament this week, adding that the anti-graft body received full co-operation from its Hong Kong counterparts, the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), which triggered the investigation in 2008.
But Sabahans are not holding their breath on whether action will be taken by AG Abdul Gani Patail.
When Swiss global financial services giant, UBS Ag confirmed that large sums of money were channeled into the bank accounts of family members of Musa and his cronies, Sabah Umno members and their BN coalition colleagues began to squirm.
Already reeling from a spate of other scandals, a stagnating economy as well as being under fire for cracking down harshly on rallies demanding free and fair elections, the revelation that foreign authorities have been scrutinising the bank accounts of some well-connected Malaysians adds a new twist to the power struggle taking shape in the country.
Scandal not new
The ‘funny money’ allegedly comes from kickbacks from the illegal flow of timber out of Sabah.
That, not all of the state’s enormous wealth is accounted for has long been suspected.
That some of it is being siphoned out to line certain pockets has enraged many especially after a World Bank report showed that the state remains the poorest in the country.
The money-laundering scandal is not new. It has simmered since late 2008 after Chia, was arrested in Hong Kong as he was about to board a flight with a bagful of cash said to total SG$16 million.
Chia was immediately linked to Musa but the Chief Minister denied knowing the man, denied any wrongdoing and, it appeared after a period of silence, the trail of shady deals and international money-laundering at the highest levels was buried.
That is until about two months ago.
It resurfaced with a vengeance with the release of new documents by online news portal Sarawak Report again fingering Musa and again forcing him to deny any involvement in the controversy.
He branded the reports a fabrication and implied the supporting documents and receipts uploaded by the news portal were forgeries.
The news portal earlier this month revealed documents which were tendered by UBS Ag in submissions during a current court case in Singapore relating to the series of deals.
These documents, it said, supported their earlier report of questionable timber deals originating out of Sabah.
No prosecutions so far
The documents included a sworn statement by the bank that money was indeed paid to Musa’s sons from a series of accounts that had received huge sums from logging concerns for “logging concessions”.
Named were accounts and payments that were leaked in Sarawak Report’s earlier exposé which the portal said proved its documents were not forgeries but “genuine bank statements” which needed to be clarified by Musa as they were compelling enough for further investigation by Malaysian authorities.
Gani has already been heavily criticised for refusing to act on the case.
MACC took full statements from Chia, Sabah lawyer Richard Christopher Barnes and many others, when they originally investigated the case after Chia’s arrest in Hong Kong.
The commission worked closely with the Hong Kong authorities and their investigations are believed to have resulted in a recommendation that no less than 40 criminal charges be pressed against Musa.
However, no prosecutions have been made thus far by Malaysian authorities.
The fact that Gani is related to the Aman family and that both Musa and his brother, Anifah, the Foreign Minister, are high-profile figures in government, troubles many within the Umno who fear unanswered accusations against them may damage the party.
Musa made a show this week of being confident that Sabah will remain a BN stronghold.
He said the people were aware that development in Sabah could only be attributed to the BN government.
“Godwilling, Sabah will continue to be a BN stronghold in the upcoming election. The Sabah people are more mature in evaluating the BN government’s track record,” he told reporters  after the last of his meet-the-community-leaders session involving Tuaran, Kota Belud and Ranau districts.
In the last general election in 2008, Sabah BN almost made a clean sweep of the 25 parliamentary seats and 60 state seats, conceding only the Kota Kinabalu parliamentary seat and Sri Tanjung state seat to DAP.
But many are beginning to wonder that with the weight of evidence of possible improper state management now sitting squarely in the public arena a change of government in Sabah may not be so far fetched.


























NFC: ‘Whistleblower’ reveals himself

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Corruption of Mahathir?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 







Be brave, Karpal tells Najib

Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA! 















By now, Umno-BN the most corrupt regime in ASEAN with largest stash of illicit outflows

 Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

















Wednesday, 13 June 2012 00:20

SABAH BN BREAKING UP? Najib moves to delay GE-13 to 2013, offers extra RM1.5m to MPs

Written by  Wong Choon Mei, Malaysia Chronicle
In the last lap to the 13th general election which must be held by mid next year, it looks like Prime Minister Najib Razak is resorting to 'money, money, money' to buy back a victory that more and more Malaysians believe will swing to Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim's Pakatan Rakyat coalition.
Najib had received a huge scare over the weekend on speculative news reports that Anwar would be announcing 6 BN defections into his PKR party, two of whom allegedly held seats in Parliament.
While this would not change the power equation, pundits expect the PKR coup to set in motion a domino effect as Sabah leaders fled the decaying BN, helping to pave the way for the country's first regime change in 55 years.
Unconfirmed 'carrots' to hold back straying MPs
Not surprisingly, news was soon leaked to the Umno-linked media that MPs would receive an additional RM1.5 million each after the Budget 13 was presented on September 28.
According to the Malaysian Insider, BN MPs who attended a pre-council meeting for the current parliamentary sitting confirmed such a plan was proposed by Najib but oddly, none would go on the record on the actual amount to be allocated. Several said that the funds “would be available upon request.”
“We have to request it for specific projects,” Deputy Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Fadillah Yusof was quoted as saying on Tuesday.
The BN MPs were also more than keen to impart other information including that it would take up to three months for the projects to be identified and carried out. They also pointed out that the proposed second round of cash handouts under the Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia or BR1M scheme would also take time to be executed if passed in Budget 2013.
"What this means is that Najib won't be calling GE-13 anytime soon. He is trying to delay the breakup of Sabah BN," PKR vice president and Batu MP Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.
"But he is looking for a miracle that won't happen. Sabah is being watched closely and it can trigger a domino effect around the nation as other BN MPs cut ties with Umno to boost their chances of retaining their seats. Umno-BN is not the best brand name to carry in Malaysia right now and that's a fact."
GE-13 next year, all eyes on Umno internal election
Malaysia's 12th general election was held on March 8, 2008, with the current batch of lawmakers sworn in on March 28. Hence, the BN's 5-year mandate ends on automatically on March 28. The Election Commission has then 60 days to fix a date for the 13th general election, which must be held before June 28, 2013.
A guessing game as to the GE-13 date has left Malaysians as well as foreign investors wearied and disgusted with Najib's inability to make up his mind. However, the 58-year-old leader is facing an unprecedented loss in confidence and trust for his BN coalition, which has ruled Malaysia since 1957.
"Going by the hints and for the second BR1M to take effect, it looks like Najib is trying to signal GE-13 is next year. For us at Pakatan, we cannot afford to relax our guard. Every day is a possible day for Najib to dissolve Parliament - so we must stay battle ready," PKR vice president Chua Jui Meng told Malaysia Chronicle.
"But it's another story at Umno, What happens now at their internal party election - who will form the new office bearers and get the coveted MP and ADUN seats? That is the bone that all the dogs so to speak will be fighting over from now on."
Fire from all fronts: All eyes on Umno now
Indeed, it does look like Najib will face fire from all fronts, especially from his own party mates who are eager to thrash out who will make it onto the Umno list of 'winnable' candidates to contest seats at both the federal and state parliament.
Infighting, already simmering, and factions openly declaring their stand will test his ability to hold the party together. Just last week, former Tourism minister Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir - perhaps smelling which way the wind was blowing - announced the formation of a new party Ikatan that aimed to revive the 'original' struggle of Umno and to work towards the creation of a 'Bangsa Malaysia'.
"Ikatan has said it won't contest GE-13 and for sure it won't get a licence to do so from the authorities but it doesn't really have to. There will be many Umno MPs unhappy with Najib who will join Ikatan to make their stand if Najib overplays his hand in the party polls and grabs everything for himself, his men and Mahathir's," an Umno watcher told Malaysia Chronicle.
He was referring to former premier Mahathir Mohamad, the only Umno stalwart left on whose support Najib is now depending on to survive the political maelstroms from within and outside their party.
Malaysia Chronicle
















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PAC chief denies scandal cover up, says MPs were no-shows

June 14, 2012
KUALA LUMPUR, June 14 —  Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid has denied any attempt to cover up high-profile government scandals despite the lack of any parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) meetings for three months, saying today that some members did not show up for the last meeting.
"We were all busy and focusing on elections. The last time I called for a meeting we had no quorum," the panel chief told reporters but refused to say which of the 13 members were absent from the meeting held in the middle of April.
The Padang Besar MP also denied "higher-ups" giving any orders for the panel not to proceed with probing four controversial cases already agreed as part of PAC's agenda as "they don't even know (about our work)."
"The PAC is non-partisan and we make decisions based on what is right and wrong," Azmi (picture) said when asked about Pakatan Rakyat's (PR) allegation that he was told not to hold meetings as they could "have a negative impact on Barisan Nasional’s (BN) chances of retaining power."
The cases are the National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) in which former Cabinet minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil and her family are accused of abusing a RM250 million federal loan, Tan Sri Tajudin Ramli’s confidential out-of-court settlement with Danaharta over his RM589 million debt, 1 Malaysia Development Bhd’s RM3.5 billion Petrosaudi investment and the cost of KLIA2 surging by RM2.2 billion to RM3.9 billion.
Azmi added that he has already directed the PAC secretary to organise a housekeeping meeting next week but could not guarantee that the four cases would be on the agenda.
"There are so many things not done. Let the committee decide," he said.
But in an immediate response, DAP publicity chief Tony Pua told The Malaysian Insider the quorum of five members was not reached because "the notice given was only one-day and it was a housekeeping meeting and no government agency was called" despite the panel already agreeing on its agenda.
"It was an excuse to waste time," he said.
PR members of the PAC had earlier said the committee's failure to meet for three months suggests a bid to cover up financial scandals involving the incumbent federal government.
They told a press conference here that despite the parliamentary committee resolving on March 5, 2012 to prioritise four top issues involving government expenditure worth close to RM9 billion including the NFCorp scandal, no meetings have been called since the end of March.
“This clearly shows that there is a cover-up order from the very top. The PAC chief has been told not to hold meetings as they could have a negative impact on Barisan Nasional’s (BN) chances of retaining power,” Petaling Jaya Utara MP Pua told reporters.
The PAC had on March 21 also decided to carry on with the NFC probe despite Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia’s orders that it cannot touch on criminal charges against Shahrizat’s husband and NFCorp chairman Datuk Seri Mohamad Salleh Ismail.
The order came just a day after the Wanita Umno chief’s family, who own NFCorp, refused to face the committee.
Dewan Rakyat had also rejected questions from four DAP lawmakers in March concerning the Tajudin-Danaharta settlement which politicians from across the divide said was a matter of public interest, saying it could not discuss issues being deliberated in court.
The four MPs had all asked Putrajaya to reveal details of the settlement and how it benefits the public as the former Malaysia Airlines chairman had already been ordered by the High Court to pay the RM589 million he owed Danaharta, which was set up to take over bad debts during the 1997 Asian financial crisis.




























PAC's inaction on major controversies under fire

14 Jun 2012 | 187 views
The Public Accounts Committee's (PAC) silence on its probes in major controversies involving almost RM9 billion of government funds, has raised suspicions that there are "cover-up" orders in place, said opposition parliamentarians.

They said today that PAC had deferred meetings for the last three months although it has yet to delve into, among others, the highly secretive out-of-court settlement between former Malaysia Airlines boss Tajudin Ramli (right) and Pengurusan Danaharta Bhd and the doubled costs of the new permanent low-cost carrier terminal in Sepang (KLIA2).

Full story: http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/200850

Cameraman: Fendi Zulkfley
Editing: Azudin Hidzir
















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Be brave, Karpal tells Najib

Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA! 















By now, Umno-BN the most corrupt regime in ASEAN with largest stash of illicit outflows

 Please scroll all the way down page to READ article - FELDA!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



















To PAC Chairman: Do Your Duty, or Otherwise Resign 

By Shannon Teoh@www.themalaysianinsider.com

PAC Chairman and MP for Padang Besar, Dato Seri Azmi Khalid
Dato’ Seri Azmi Khalid has denied any attempt to cover up high-profile government scandals despite the lack of any parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) meetings for three months, saying today that some members did not show up for the last meeting.
“We were all busy and focusing on elections. The last time I called for a meeting we had no quorum,” the panel chief told reporters but refused to say which of the 13 members were absent from the meeting held in the middle of April.
The Padang Besar MP also denied “higher-ups” giving any orders for the panel not to proceed with probing four controversial cases already agreed as part of PAC’s agenda as “they don’t even know (about our work).”
“The PAC is non-partisan and we make decisions based on what is right and wrong,” Azmi  said when asked about Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) allegation that he was told not to hold meetings as they could “have a negative impact on Barisan Nasional’s (BN) chances of retaining power.”
The cases are the National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) in which former Cabinet minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil and her family are accused of abusing a RM250 million federal loan, Tan Sri Tajudin Ramli’s confidential out-of-court settlement with Danaharta over his RM589 million debt, 1 Malaysia Development Bhd’s RM3.5 billion Petrosaudi investment and the cost of KLIA2 surging by RM2.2 billion to RM3.9 billion.
Azmi added that he has already directed the PAC secretary to organise a housekeeping meeting next week but could not guarantee that the four cases would be on the agenda.
“There are so many things not done. Let the committee decide,” he said.But in an immediate response, DAP publicity chief Tony Pua told The Malaysian Insider the quorum of five members was not reached because “the notice given was only one-day and it was a housekeeping meeting and no government agency was called” despite the panel already agreeing on its agenda.
“It was an excuse to waste time,” he said. PR members of the PAC had earlier said the committee’s failure to meet for three months suggests a bid to cover up financial scandals involving the incumbent federal government.
They told a press conference here that despite the parliamentary committee resolving on March 5, 2012 to prioritise four top issues involving government expenditure worth close to RM9 billion including the NFCorp scandal, no meetings have been called since the end of March.
“This clearly shows that there is a cover-up order from the very top. The PAC chief has been told not to hold meetings as they could have a negative impact on Barisan Nasional’s (BN) chances of retaining power,” Petaling Jaya Utara MP Pua told reporters.
The PAC had on March 21 also decided to carry on with the NFC probe despite Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia’s orders that it cannot touch on criminal charges against Shahrizat’s husband and NFCorp chairman Datuk Seri Mohamad Salleh Ismail.
The order came just a day after the Wanita UMNO chief’s family, who own NFCorp, refused to face the committee.
Dewan Rakyat had also rejected questions from four DAP lawmakers in March concerning the Tajuddin-Danaharta settlement which politicians from across the divide said was a matter of public interest, saying it could not discuss issues being deliberated in court.
The four MPs had all asked Putrajaya to reveal details of the settlement and how it benefits the public as the former Malaysia Airlines chairman had already been ordered by the High Court to pay the RM589 million he owed Danaharta, which was set up to take over bad debts during the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis.

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