Probe into 1MDB may be wrapped up soon

Mr Hasan says the information received from its probe would be enough for the PAC to make an objective, transparent and fair conclusion.
Mr Hasan says the information received from its probe would be enough for the PAC to make an objective, transparent and fair conclusion.

PETALING JAYA • The probe into state investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) - a bipartisan panel in the Malaysian Parliament - may be wrapped up soon, committee chairman Hasan Arifin said yesterday.

Its final proceedings to investigate 1MDB's management and administration will be held today and tomorrow.

The session will involve former 1MDB president and chief executive officer Shahrol Halmi and the company's former chairman Mohd Bakke Salleh.

Datuk Hasan said the information received from the session and nine previous ones would be enough for the PAC to make an objective, transparent and fair conclusion. The probe into 1MDB began in May last year.

The Auditor-General, which conducted its own investigation, is scheduled to present its final report on 1MDB to PAC from Feb 24 to 25.

Mr Hasan said the committee will require time to analyse the report before presenting its findings to Parliament.

He added that the suggestion of PAC member and Democratic Action Party's national publicity secretary Tony Pua for PAC to call more witnesses - including former 1MDB CEO Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman and Bank Negara governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz - to have their statements recorded was not necessary.

He explained that this was because all issues relating to the time Mr Mohd Hazem was CEO had already been answered by 1MDB chairman Lodin Wok Kamaruddin during proceedings last month.

"It is my view that as the 1MDB chairman, he (Lodin) is responsible to know in detail the operations of the company," Mr Hasan said, adding that all the information given by Tan Sri Lodin was enough for the committee to make its conclusions.

On Bank Negara's questions about 1MDB's US$1.83 billion (S$2.55 billion) fund transfers for investments abroad, Mr Hasan said that this had already been explained in the media and in the Attorney-General's own press statements.

Last October, the Attorney-General cleared 1MDB officials of making a false statement about the matter, saying no offence was committed, so no further action would be taken.

Mr Hasan said PAC intends to present its report to Parliament in the Dewan Rakyat session which starts in March.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 11, 2016, with the headline 'Probe into 1MDB may be wrapped up soon'. Print Edition | Subscribe