Friday, September 10, 2010


Even from Sarawak’s sewers – Taib can dig RM78 million!

Sarawak Report

It has emerged that Taib THE WHITE HAIRS and his family have conducted a massive raid on the public funding for Kuching’s new sewerage system.

Figures show that out of a total 530 million ringgit handed out from taxpayers’ money to pay for the project, a staggering 78 million ringgit has been siphoned off by the Taib family and a crony company called Nishimatsu Construction (Nishimatsu’s parent company is currently being prosecuted in Japan in connection with a massive bribery and corruption scandal).

The theft is just the latest example of the so-called ’skimming’ of publicly funded projects by using bogus sub-contracts, which has become a standard form of abuse in Sarawak under Taib.

Critics have condemned it as the crudest possible form of corruption.

”Even a child could understand what is going on”, complained one outraged opposition figure last week, “the only reason Taib gets away with it is because he would sack any newspaper editor who dared to print what is going on. If the people knew the extent of it, the billions he has stolen in this way, they would be marching in fury!”.
Skimming using bogus sub-contracting is now standard practice in Sarawak

The method of theft is indeed astonishingly simple and the Taib WHITE HAIRS, has made it common practice during his thirty years rule over the State of Sarawak.

First he abuses his position of power by placing a project in the hands of a company run by an unqualified member of his own family or a friend. Then the crony sub-contracts the project to another company that is capable of doing the job, but for far less than the original amount. This way the Taibs pocket the difference.

In the case of the Kuching Sewerage System, therefore, it came as little surprise to insiders when it was announced on 30th September 2008that the Chief Minister had awarded the 530 million ringgit contract to a consortium of three companies that included Kumpulan Construction, which is run by his sister.
She and Taib’s brother Onn own 87.5% of the shares in the company.

So what does Raziah Mahmud know about building a public sewerage system?

Kumpulan construction reportedly has no construction equipment and Raziah is not qualified to build a modern sewerage system. In fact, her meteoric ‘business career’ developed shortly after Taib became Chief Minister, when numerous public contracts started coming the way of companies suddenly started up by herself and other Taib family members.

Onlookers point out that Raziah has only developed one area of evident expertise, which is her ability to rapidly sub-contract projects which have been handed to her by her brother.

Thus, on 21st October 2008, less than a month after the original government contract was awarded to the consortium of Kumpulan Construction, Nishimatsu Construction and HSL
it was further announced by HSL that the project had now been sub-contracted to them alone, but at the much reduced sum of 452 Million Ringgit. This leaves 78 million ringgit unaccounted for in the hands of the other two companies, Kumpulan and Nishimatsu.

Unsavoury business partner?

Ichiro Ozawa - Japanese opposition leader forced to resign over Nishimatsu funding scandal. Who next?

Sarawak Report would therefore like to know how the missing 78 million ringgit was divided between Raziah and the Japanese-owned Nishimatsu Construction Co?

Nishimatsu Construction hit the headlines last year when the Japanese authorities arrested its Chairman for operating a I billion Yen slush fund, which he admitted he had used to make bribes to gain foreign contracts and to make illegal political donations. The scandal forced the resignation of the Japanese opposition leader Ichiro Ozawa.

Therefore, it is only fair to demand a clear explanation of the relationship between Nishimatsu and the Taib family and to ask what work could have been carried out by Kumpulan/Nishamatsu during this three week period that could have merited a payment of what is around US $25 million?

If such enquiries have brought a top political resignation in Japan, what might a proper investigation produce in Sarawak?

Taibs’ long-standing ties with Nishimatsu

Nishimatsu admitted paying 400 million yen bribe to build this water tunnel in Thailand. What was the deal in Sarawak?


Our researches have further shown that the Kuching Sewerage project is just one of several large-scale public construction projects that have been handed in much the same way to the same consortium of Kumpulan Construction, Nishimatsu Construction and HSL.

Since Raziah’s take-over of Kumpulan in June 1986 (up to which point it was a dormant company) the projects awarded to the same three companies have included the 40,000 seat outdoor stadium at Petra Jaya worth RM105 million and The Senari Deepsea Port valued at RM160 million.

Unfortunately for the public purse however, the level of profit that Kumpulan has been able to register from these major ventures has been minimal, according to figures obtained from the Register of Companies. For example, in 1991 a turnover of MR8.5 million produced only MR 249,474 in profits and in 1991 a turnover of MR 5,811,443 produced profits of just MR 23,451. In fact for five of the years between 1986 and 1998 the company actually registered a loss for tax purposes.

How much went to Taib himself?

Given that Sarawak Report has now established that Taib family members operate a system of secretly holding shares in their companies in trust for the C M.
in fact a large chunk of the money skimmed off from the sewerage project has gone straight into Taib’s own foreign bank accounts.

The vast ‘cut’ taken by the C M’s family for this project means that either the people of Sarawak have paid MR 78 million too much for the job in the first place, or that the contract is now short of money and will be inadequately carried out.

Worringly, the most likely answer is a combination of both, meaning the people of Kuching have paid too much money for a sub-standard sewerage system purely in order to further enrich the Taib family.

Reform of the system could immediately be carried out by returning to the conventional system of open tendering for public contracts, which is the globally-accepted method of preventing fraud of this nature and is supported by the main opposition parties in Sarawak.

Posted by admin@ malaysiachronicle at 6:38 AM


Malaysian Website Blocked to Cover Up a Scandal
Tag it:Written by Our Correspondent
Thursday, 09 September 2010
Unknown forces attempt to block Malaysia Today from printing documents involving a huge scandal

Malaysia Today, the hard-hitting news website edited by Raja Petra Kamarudin, has been blocked by mysterious technical problems twice in the last 24 hours after publishing damning articles of deep corruption at the top of the Malaysian government.

One implicated the United Malays National Organization, the country's leading political party, in looting MAS, the country's flag carrier. A second alleged that a friend of Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak was attempting to steer RM200 million into the pockets of Najib's family from China Railways Engineering Corporation (CREC), for double-tracking the national railway.

"We are under severe attack," Raja Petra said in an email from London, where he now lives. "We've been down for the last 12 hours and a day before that for 24 hours. Looks like someone is spending a lot of money to keep us off the air." The website's technology personnel restored access, only to have it disappear again.

"It was the MAS story," Raja Petra said. "The site was brought down just a few hours after that. We revealed documents to and from the court to compromise the MAS case against Tajudin Ramli."

The fugitive editor was forced to flee the country 18 months ago after being charged with criminal defamation of Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, and being threatened with prosecution under the country's stiff Internal Security Act, which allows for what amounts to indefinite detention without or trial.

It wasn't clear who was doing the blocking, but whoever it is must be learning that the Internet is a sieve. The offending stories almost immediately appeared in another anonymous blog called "Malaysians Must Know The Truth."

Despite the fact that Malaysian bloggers have developed a healthy opposition press delivering voluminous details of government wrongdoings that can't be read in the government-controlled press, so far the Internet has remained free of interference. Government leaders have repeatedly denied any intention to shut down the bloggers.

Over recent weeks, however, Raja Petra has been particularly hard-hitting with a series of articles based on verbatim documents concerning the misdoings in MAS. The Asia Sentinel, in an Aug. 24 article using the same documents, wrote that Tajudin Ramli, a crony of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, was accused of looting the airline of tens of millions of dollars and very nearly putting it into bankruptcy by investigators who themselves then faced a campaign to discredit them.

The airline, which had been privatized and turned over to Tajudin, had to be rescued by the government. After it had incurred RM8 billion in losses, Tajudin returned the airline to the government for almost the original price, the losses notwithstanding.

Raja Petra continued to write about the issue, culminating in an article on Sept. 8 in which he said Tajudin had been given immunity by UMNO with the backing of former Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and that reports by investigators and whistle-blowers went unheeded by the police.

In the article, Raja Petra said he had been visited by Tajudin's lawyers in London, who told him that he had only been a front man for UMNO and that UMNO "not only has to protect him from prosecution but that they also had to ensure that the government bought back the shares at the same price that they were sold to him although the shares were only worth a portion of the real value."

According to the article, which is printed here, "This was going on not only for MAS but for other deals as well." The depositions listed a long series of documents detailing misdoings in UEM/Renong, an UMNO-linked construction company once headed by Halim Saad, another Mahathir crony, which has long been accused of looting the government treasury through vastly overpriced construction contracts.

"These are all Tajudin's allies working in concert to now spill the beans. They were all Umno front men and nominees. And they all now have an axe to grind with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad," Raja Petra wrote. "And, more importantly, it appears like the current Prime Minister, Najib Tun Razak, is giving his tacit approval for Tajudin Ramli, Rahman Maidin and Halim Saad to sing like a canary and finger UMNO, Dr Mahathir and Tun Daim Zainuddin as the real rogues behind the plundering of billions of ringgit of taxpayers' money."

That wasn't all. On Sept. 5, Malaysia Today posted an article alleging that Tan Kay Hock, the controlling shareholder of Johan Holdings Bhd, a publicly-listed investment holding company and golfing partner of the prime minister had asked Chinese officials who had contracted to double-track the national railway for RM500 million and told them that RM200 million is for Najib's family.

"And this is making the Chinese very unhappy because, in China, both the givers as well the sis charged to the family of the deceased," Raja Petra wrote. "The Chinese are wondering whether it is worth the risk to pay Kay Hock the RM500 million he is demanding."

The national railway, he wrote, "is being used as Najib's new cash cow." A deal to supply coaches worth RM1.4 billion went to a company involving Najib's wife Rosmah and two other women. The coaches were said to be worth only RM300 million and do not function.

The documents referred to by Malaysia Today are listed below.