Najib Questioned Over 1MDB as Task Force Seeks to Recover Assets
Najib Questioned Over 1MDB as Task Force Seeks to Recover Assets
Najib Razak, Malaysian Ex-Prime Minister, Questioned Over 1MDB
22 May, 2018, 10:10
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razaksaid Saturday he will take a short holiday to spend time with his family after a shocking electoral defeat that ended the 60-year rule of his coalition.
He was summoned almost two weeks after the defeat of his long-ruling coalition in national elections, a loss partly due to public anger over alleged corruption at the 1MDB state investment fund that Najib set up.
The sum is just a fraction of billions of dollars allegedly siphoned from state fund 1MDB, a scandal that dogged the last three years of Najib's near-decade-long rule and was one of the main reasons why voters dumped him in an election on May 9. The new government has reopened an investigation into the case, with police raiding Najib's properties and seizing more than 300 expensive handbags as well as suitcases filled with cash, jewelry and other valuables.
Najib will have to appear in person at the anti-corruption commission headquarters to have his statement recorded.
Swarmed by reporters, Najib looked calm and smiled as he was escorted into the agency's building.
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But new Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said investigations showed the wrongdoing at 1MDB were more serious than expected.
"Najib has lodged a police report asking for protection for himself and his family as they fear for their safety after the 14th general election", a Najib spokesman told Bernama news agency.
Najib has consistently denied any wrongdoing related to 1MDB since the scandal erupted in 2015, but he replaced an attorney-general and several MACC officers to shut down an investigation.
The initial focus of the MACC's new probe is on how 42 million ringgit ($10.6 million) went from SRC International to Najib's account.
"The government hopes the setting up of this task force, comprising a multi-agency enforcement unit, will help restore the dignity of Malaysia that has been tainted by the 1MDB kleptocracy scandal", said Mahathir's office.
At one point Shukri even flew to Washington to bring the 1MDB case, in which suspicious funds ended up in the personal accounts of Najib, to USA authorities.
On Sunday, he was escorted by police as he traveled back to his hometown of Pekan in central Pahang state.
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