Pressures continue to pile on Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and this time he is being asked about his role in 1Malaysia Development Bhd’s (1MDB) predecessor - the Terengganu Investment Authority (TIA).
Kuala Terengganu MP Raja Kamarul Bahrin Shah Ahmad is demanding the prime minister to confirm whether TIA had attempted to use the state’s oil and gas revenue as collateral for its multi-billion ringgit loans.
He said Najib must come forward now that it is established that he had the final say in TIA in 2009, when the investment company reportedly tried to pledge the state’s oil and gas revenue as collateral.
TIA was the predecessor to the now debt-laden 1Malaysia Development Bhd, and was initially formed as a sovereign wealth fund for Terengganu as a vehicle to manage its oil royalty payment funds from Putrajaya after the state government fell to PAS.
Former Terengganu Menteri Besar Ahmad Said had revealed that TIA tried to pledge the state’s oil and gas revenue as collateral, but sitting MB Ahmad Razif Abdul Rahman, who was then an executive council (exco) member, says he knows nothing of the deal.
“Who is telling the truth on this matter? Or was the matter raised at the federal level under 1MDB with Najib’s knowledge and not at the Terengganu exco meeting, which explains Razif’s denial of any knowledge on the matter?” Raja Kamarul Bahrin ( photo ) asked in a statement.
He said the rakyat should know the risks the government was willing to take with its oil and gas revenue, and why this was aborted.
Malaysiakini yesterday reported that TIA’s memorandum and articles of association states the PM’s written approval was required for any of TIA's financial commitment, including investments, restructuring or any matters concerning federal government policy, national interest and national security.
Sore point between ex-MB and Najib
Raja Kamarul Bahrin said that this confirmation also means that Najib can clarify on who paid for the RM250 million commissions on the RM5 billion bonds issued by TIA with federal guarantee.
“I had also asked since 1MDB had taken over TIA who actually settled the debts incurred by TIA - the Terengganu government or 1MDB? Until today these questions remain unanswered by the government,” he said.
Ahmad ( photo ) was reported to have revealed the attempt to pledge the state’s oil and gas revenue while debating in the Terengganu state legislative assembly two weeks ago.
He said the deal was aborted due to various reasons, but it was a sore point between him and Najib.
Ahmad was removed from office last year and he momentarily quit Umno, allegedly because he was forced to quit before his daughter's wedding.