September 28, 2022

1MDB audit tampering trial: Audio clip of meeting to amend report played in court

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KUALA LUMPUR: An audio recording said to be of a coordination meeting to amend the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) audit report was played for the High Court here on Wednesday (Nov 20).

Several of the voices of those attending the meeting, which was held on Feb 24,2016, were identified in the recording which lasts two hours and 45 minutes.

Former Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Ali Hamsa, who was under examination-in-chief by lead prosecutor Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, confirmed several voices in the recording.

They are former Auditor General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang and Saadatul Nafisah (National Audit Department), Datuk Seri Mohamad Isa Hussain (Treasury), and Tan Sri Shukry Mohd Salleh (Prime Minister’s Office).

The witness also confirmed the voice of former 1MDB CEO Arul Kanda Kandasamy in the recording.

Earlier, Sri Ram tendered a USB pendrive that contained the voice recording of a Feb 24 meeting chaired by Ali.

A transcript of the recording was also handed over to the court.

When asked whether he had seen the pendrive before, Ali answered in the negative.

In his testimony on Tuesday, Ali revealed that he called a coordination meeting between 1MDB and several related agencies at the behest of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

When the meeting convened on Feb 24, Arul Kanda, Ambrin and Saadatul Nafisah, Mohamad Isa and Shukry were in attendance.

According to Ali’s witness statement, three other individuals were also present, namely Asri Hamdin (Treasury), Datuk Dzulkifli Ahmad (Attorney General’s Chambers) and Ali’s senior private secretary Datuk Norazman Ayob.

No minutes were recorded during the meeting.

At the end of the meeting, it was agreed that four issues would be removed from the audit report, including the issues of two conflicting financial statements and fugitive financier Low Taek Jho’s presence at a 1MDB meeting despite him having no official position in the company.

Najib is accused of using his position to order amendments to the 1MDB final audit report before it was tabled to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to avoid any action against him.

He is accused of committing the offence in Putrajaya between Feb 22 and Feb 26,2016.

Arul Kanda was charged with abetting Najib at the same place and time.

The hearing continues before Justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan on Thursday (Nov 21).

Related stories:

‘Gani sacked as AG because Najib lost trust in him’

Conflicting 1MDB financial statements removed

‘Najib can be sued as public officer’

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