The authorities should have, at the very start, said the RM2.6 billion found in Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak personal accounts came as donations from wealthy Arabs, veteran journalist A Kadir Jasin says.
"Why did Najib and his entire brigade of spin masters have to beat around the bush? Why couldn't they have flogged this donation story from the start?
"Days before the MACC announcement, talk was rife that one or several super-rich Arab princes and sheikhs had 'admitted' to donating a huge sum of money to Najib," Kadir wrote in his blog Monday night.
The MACC announced yesterday that the RM2.6 billion purportedly deposited into Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's personal banks accounts came from donations .
Kadir ( photo ), the former editor-in-chief of New Straits Times , said the people were prone to speculating the turns of events after the 'backdated' termination of attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail on July 27, the cabinet reshuffle of July 28 and other related developments.
He said it was very peculiar that it took such a long time for the MACC and the 1MDB task force to discover that the US$700 million came from donations, after all the humdrum of the events.
"With the benefit of hindsight, the donations story and the talk about the generous Arab benefactor/s could be wholly possible. It has been publicly announced that Najib’s wife, Rosmah Mansor, is very close to the wealthy Arabs, including members of royal families," he wrote.
Another round of 'silap mata'?
However, Kadir said more questions have been left unanswered following the disappearance of people sought by the investigators.
"If the money in the prime minister’s accounts was not from 1MDB, why didn’t Jho Low say so? Or why did people linked to the accounts have to run away from the country?
"People who were sought by the special task force (investigating 1MDB), including Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil and (Datuk) Suboh Mohd Yassin, should now come forward to clear the prime minister’ name," Kadir wrote.
He also wanted MACC Chief Commissioner Abu Kassim Mohamed to resign voluntarily for failing to discover earlier that the RM2.6 billion in the prime minister’s personal accounts in AmBank came from donations.
“How can they play-play with the prime minister like that?
“Hopefully we are not being presented with yet another round of silap mata (magic) and sihir (witchcraft) in the 1MDB saga,” Kadir said.