PRIME Minister Anwar Ibrahim has nominated Titiwangsa MP Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani to oversee a task force to “resolve matters” concerning the 1MDB scandal.
Anwar agreed with Johari’s criticism of Putrajaya’s US$2.5 bil deal with Goldman Sachs over the issue, according to Bloomberg.
In 2020, when Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin served as prime minister, a settlement with the investment bank was achieved, which involved the investment bank paying the government US$2.5 bil in cash and guaranteeing the return of US$1.4 bil in 1MDB assets seized by authorities around the world.
“I myself disagree with the past decisions, which were too light when the understanding was made. Goldman Sachs profited off our hardship and pain,” the Tambun MP told Dewan Rakyat yesterday (March 9).
The former second finance minister urged Putrajaya to look into the parties in Putrajaya’s settlement with Goldman Sachs last month, claiming Malaysia had been short-changed in the situation.
“Goldman Sachs acted as the financial adviser and lead manager for three bonds issued by 1MDB worth US$6.5 bil, earning US$606 mil in fees in the process.
“The criminal conviction of two former Goldman Sachs employees pointed conclusively to the ‘questionable’ nature of the 1MDB settlement,” Free Malaysia Today reported Johari as saying.
Johari pointed out that former Goldman Sachs bankers Tim Leissner and Roger Ng were part of the bank’s senior management, claiming they were essentially at the heart of the 1MDB fraud.
“Their wrongdoing can be attributed to Goldman Sachs to hold the bank fully accountable for all 1MDB losses,” the Barisan Nasional MP added. — March 10, 2023
Main photo credit: The Edge Markets