Veteran newsperson A Kadir Jasin says a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) into several China and Singapore-linked projects should be formed, as it is important to know what prompted Najib Abdul Razak and his then government to make such "stupid deals" in the first place.
In a blog post yesterday, the special adviser on media and communications to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he was in support of the ex-premier's call for an RCI to be formed to probe the China-linked East Coast Rail Link (ECRL), and the two Suria Strategic Energy Resources (SSER) pipeline projects - all of which were inked during his tenure as prime minister.
Kadir, however, said he was only agreeable to the forming of the RCI if its scope was also expended to include the High-Speed Rail (HSR) project with Singapore.
"I agree with Mohd Najib in the (forming of the) RCI as we want to know why he or the Barisan National (BN) government made such "stupid deals" with China and Singapore?
"Is this because the BN government had no other way but to incur such great debts in order to pay off 1MDB debt or was there any other reason Malaysia must bow to China and Singapore?" he wrote.
He pointed out that Singapore authorities were probing the 1MDB scandal, while Umno and BN were silent on the deal at the time, as though according their former chairperson full support in the matter.
Hence he hoped the RCI that Najib proposed would be able to "shed some light" on the deal.
"The Umno leaders who allegedly received 1MDB money must be called to give their statements as Najib (photo) would have told them his reasons for forming 1MDB...
"We should never forget, China is a big country. Singapore is very advanced. They both have a wide spy network. The fear is they are keeping our leaders' secrets and which can be used for strategic reasons," he said.
Calling Jho Low as witness
Kadir also said he further supported the RCI proposal on the condition Najib, who is currently Pekan MP, would instruct fugitive financier Jho Low to return to Malaysia.
It was reported that the Malaysian courts have issued an arrest warrant against Jho Low and Low's father Hock Peng to assist with the probe into scandal-ridden 1MDB after charges were filed against them in absentia.
Low has repeatedly been linked to 1MDB and Najib, and is being investigated in several other countries.
However, he has constantly denied any wrongdoing and said he will not receive a fair trial should he return.
Kadir (photo) said Low would be able to help Najib's defense, as the latter is currently facing multiple charges on corruption and criminal breach of trust pertaining to the handling of funds in relations to 1MDB-linked SRC International.
"If Najib is innocent, he is obliged to bring Jho Low as a witness, unless someone else is the one (allegedly) conspiring with Jho Low...and it is that person that Najib is protecting.
"The situation will become more desperate for Najib if he doesn't ask Jho Low to return. This is as Jho Low himself is in the process of being charged, like Najib, in the Malaysian courts," Kadir stated.
In calling for the RCI last Wednesday, Najib had stated that the Mahathir-led new government must reveal all agreements, feasibility studies, economic impact assessments and cost-benefit analysis to allow the public to determine whether there are reasonable reasons for Putrajaya to scrap the projects.
He then took to Facebook the next day to call for more RCIs on the unpaid refunds from the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the Inland Revenue Board.