Bersih declares accounts, challenges Najib to do the same over political donation

KUALA LUMPUR - Electoral reform group Bersih on Tuesday (Oct 6) gave a full accounting of the RM2.6 million (S$0.8 million) in public support it received for the Bersih 4 rally as it challenged Prime Minister Najib Razak to do the same over a donation a thousand times that amount into his private bank account.

"What we are declaring today has been ratified by our financial officers," Bersih treasurer Masjaliza Hamzah said at a press conference at the group's headquarters in Petaling Jaya.

She also revealed that a 2,126-page bank statement with details of the donors had been sent to the group's auditors, reported The Malaysian Insider.

Masjaliza said the Prime Minister's credibility would "disappear" if he did not also come clean on what had become of the RM2.6 billion donation by a Middle East benefactor, which Najib had previously indicated was a political donation.

Najib and members of the ruling Barisan Nasional had earlier criticised Bersih for not declaring the sources of its funding, according to the news portal.

The group announced a RM1.9 million surplus after deducting RM664,052 in expenses for the 34-hour rally on Aug 29-30. The rally cost the group over RM300,000, while another RM340,000 was pre-rally expenditure for printing of t-shirts, among other expenses, the news portal reported. 

Bersih said that some 27,000 people made donations for the Bersih 4 rally to demand Najib's resignation over the private donation made by the Middle East source to his bank account as well as the alleged financial mismanagement at 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). The state investor has accumulated huge debts of RM42 billion in just five years.