DAP calls for full independent investigations into Bank Negara whether it has become a "den of thieves" if Abdul Muradís statutory declaration is to be believed


Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang
 

(Petaling Jaya,  Wednesday): DAP calls for full independent investigations into Bank Negara whether it has become a "den of thieves" if former Bank Negara assistant governor Datuk Abdul Murad Khalid is to be believed.

Muradís purpose of making his statutory declaration is to accuse former Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim of having amassed a fortune of RM3 billion while in government through over 20 "Master Accounts".

However,  if his statutory declaration is to be believed, it presents a frightening picture of the Bank Negara being a "den of thieves", deeply involved in corruption, money laundering and being a conduit of funds for shady purposes  instead of being citadel of moral and financial rectitude to ensure that bankers in the banking industry are honest and upright men and women.  Murad is telling Malaysians that the central bankers in Malaysia are even more crooked than the most dishonest private bankers in the country!

In Parliament, the BN MP for Rompin, Dr. Jamaluddin Jarjis has called on the government to freeze the RM3 billion in the over 20 "Master Accounts" used by Anwar, and I fully agree, if there are in existence such RM3 billion and 20 "Master Accounts".

Murad claims that he was involved in the operations of one such "Master Account", and that he had also been involved in the pay-out of more than RM120 million to Anwar and various other individuals and organisations. If this was true, why was Murad unable to give details such as  the account number of this  particular Master Account?

If Anwar had operated "Master Accounts", then it could be assumed that other Barisan Nasional leaders have also their  "Master Accounts", and Malaysians are entitled to ask whether collectively Barisan Nasional leaders have among them more or less than 100 "Master Accounts" and what is role of the Bank Negara governors and officers - to monitor or to service them!

In Indonesia, a major breakthrough had been achieved with  the Indonesian Parliament making public the audit report into the murky US$80 million  Bank Bali scandal, which named the beneficiaries of embezzled millions and how much each had received - causing someone to call the report  "A list of the robbers!"

In Malaysia, however, there are no accountability and transparency in the publication of reports into bank scandals in the country - especially the three Bank Bumiputra scandals in 12 years requiring three bail-outs involving RM4.7 billion of public funds.

What is worse, Bank Negaraís integrity is now seen as no better  and in some cases, even lower than private banks.  This is why I had demanded in Parliament on Monday that the time has come for a full and independent investigation and audit of Bank Negara, similar to that conducted on Bank Bali in Indonesia, to re-establish the moral authority and integrity of the central bank.

(3/11/99)


*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong