Ex-DPM, PKR to talk to public on 1MDB issue

Former DPM Mr Muhyiddin (at right) with PKR president Dr Wan Azizah (centre) and other party leaders at a media conference yesterday. Mr Muhyiddin said the PKR would hold meetings in rural areas, where the bulk of support for the ruling Umno coalitio
Former DPM Mr Muhyiddin (at right) with PKR president Dr Wan Azizah (centre) and other party leaders at a media conference yesterday. Mr Muhyiddin said the PKR would hold meetings in rural areas, where the bulk of support for the ruling Umno coalition comes from, to explain the opposition's concerns about 1MDB.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

Roadshow aims to help rural folk understand concerns over fund scandal, says Muhyiddin

SUBANG JAYA/WASHINGTON • Malaysian former deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin is joining forces with the opposition party headed by Anwar Ibrahim, another ex-deputy premier, on a nationwide roadshow to explain the concerns surrounding troubled state fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB).

Tan Sri Muhyiddin yesterday made his first public appearance with Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, the president of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and Anwar's wife, to say that they will hold such meetings in rural areas.

The 1MDB scandal will be explained in simpler terms for the public, the Malaysian media reported him as saying.

The bulk of support for the Umno-led ruling coalition comes from Malays in rural Peninsular Malaysia and from the bumiputera races in Sabah and Sarawak.

Meanwhile, the authorities in the United States have issued subpoenas to Goldman Sachs Group for documents related to the bank's dealings with 1MDB, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported late on Friday.

RAISING AWARENESS

The people would not know the issue and its effects if they are not given detailed explanations on this matter. Not many people understand (economic) terms and graphs. I support this initiative so the people realise what is happening.

EX-MALAYSIAN DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER MUHYIDDIN YASSIN, on the importance of telling people in simpler terms about the 1MDB scandal.

The subpoenas followed the July 20 revelation by the US Department of Justice that it was filing civil suits to seize US$1 billion (S$1.3 billion) worth of assets its believes were siphoned out from 1MDB, with the benefactors including Prime Minister Najib Razak's stepson, Mr Riza Aziz, and a former confidant, businessman Low Taek Jho.

Yesterday, PM Najib, celebrating a Hari Raya event in his hometown of Pekan in Pahang, said that he will continue to carry out his duties despite facing various challenges and pressures from within and outside the country.

"There's nothing, all are as usual... I must be committed to my duties and responsibilities, whether as the Pekan Member of Parliament or the Prime Minister, to safeguard the interests of nearly 30 million Malaysians," he said.

Mr Muhyiddin was sacked from his post in July last year after asking Datuk Seri Najib to clearly answer questions about 1MDB's debt issues.

The ousted deputy has since teamed up with former premier Mahathir Mohamad and several other ex-Umno rebels in a bid to topple Mr Najib. They are mulling setting up a new political party.

Mr Muhyiddin said yesterday that the roadshow needs to use simpler language.

"The people would not know the issue and its effects if they are not given detailed explanations on this matter," he said.

"Not many people understand (economic) terms and graphs. I support this initiative so that the people realise what is happening."

Meanwhile, WSJ has reported that Goldman Sachs received the requests for information earlier this year from the US Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission, an unnamed source told the business newspaper.

Investigators have also subpoenaed a Goldman banker who worked closely with the Malaysian fund, WSJ had reported in March.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 31, 2016, with the headline 'Ex-DPM, PKR to talk to public on 1MDB issue'. Print Edition | Subscribe