MACC: What more evidence you need ?

Video expose implicates Sarawak CM, kin in alleged land graft

A new video implicates Taib and his family in shady land deals.KUALA LUMPUR, March 19 — An international activist organisation provided today video proof of shady land deals in Sarawak that implicates the state’s Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud and his family, with parts of the clip aired on the Al-Jazeera news channel at 10am.

In a covert investigation, Global Witness (GW) captured on video dealings with Taib’s cousins and several other intermediaries to acquire thousands of hectares of forest land that the London-based activist said revealed the systematic corruption and illegality that lay at the heart of Malaysia’s biggest state.

“This film proves for the first time what has long been suspected — that the small elite around Chief Minister Taib are systematically abusing the region’s people and natural resources to line their own pockets,” said Tom Picken, forest team leader at Global Witness, in a statement released today.

“It shows exactly how they do it and it shows the utter contempt they hold for Malaysia’s laws, people and environment.”

In a 16-minute video clip, GW investigators, who posed as foreign investors, recorded snippets of their conversation with Taib’s cousins and lawyers, to purchase the land for hefty profit and which the environmental campaigner said would displace thousands of the indigenous people living there.

A recorded conversion with sisters Fatimah Abdul Rahman and Norlia Abdul Rahman — who are the daughters of the state’s former Chief Minister Tun Abdul Rahman Ya’akub and first cousins with the incumbent CM — provided a very telling glimpse into the means of how business is conducted in Sarawak to enrich the ruling elite.

Fatimah: Ample Agro belongs to my family, but my sisters, the four elder ones are in the company. The Land and Survey Department, they are the ones who issue this licence… Of course it’s from the CM’s directive but I can speak to the CM very easily.

GW: Can you?

Fatimah: Yes.

GW: And you think he’ll agree?

Fatimah: Yeah, he was the one who gave us the land. He’s my cousin [laughs]. His mother and my father are sisters and brothers, siblings. He’s my cousin so it’s quite easy.

The sisters said they were owners of 5,000 hectares of land given to them for a nominal sum by Taib, and which they were looking to sell under their company, Ample Agro, which they admitted to be a shell company.

GW: You’re proposing basically, Ample Agro, which is your company OK, sell your company, rather than the land. And your company owns the land?

Norlia: Yes… I bought that company as a shell company for this land.

Their lawyer, Alvin Chong, was also recorded in the video telling the GW “investors” how to evade real property gains taxes.

Another lawyer, Huang Lung Ong of Huang & Company Advocates, was also recorded trying to sell land for his uncle, a prominent businessman in Sibu, Datuk Hii Yii Peng, said to have close ties with Taib, saying that at least 10 per cent of the sale price would have to go to the chief minister as commission.

In its statement, GW alleged that senior government officials and a timber company executive said it was standard practice in Sarawak for companies to pay a personal fee to Abdul Taib in return for approval of timber and plantation licences.

London lawyers representing the chief minister have denied the allegations, the NGO reported.

“The Government of Sarawak issues licences for land in very controlled circumstances,” the law firm, Mishcon de Reya, was quoted as saying. “This is an administrative exercise, not political patronage.

“Our client never demands or accepts bribes for the grant of licences and leases.

“He has not issued any ‘directive’… illegally to benefit his cousins.”

Taib, 76, has been Sarawak chief minister for 32 years, having taken office in March 1981.

His personal wealth has stirred much controversy, with detractors alleging he gained much of it through dubious means.


47 thoughts on “MACC: What more evidence you need ?

  1. No action will be taken by MACC or any other authority for the simple reasons:
    1. The beneficiaries are all Malays and in Malay culture bribery and corruption is tolerated.
    2. Tribal loyalty y demands you close one eye
    3. offending party is not from the opposition.
    4. The beneficairies are related to political lords for whom corruption is the very reason they took up politics
    5. Najib has given is nod and is the role model for corruption

    You can add on.

  2. This video recording of the land business deal conversation is not concrete evidence to implicate the CM. Any greedy relatives or friends of his, or those who claim to be ones, could be involved in this kind of dealing in attempts to swindle unsuspecting & similarly greedy individuals without the consent or even knowledge of the CM. GW has to do better than this to screw the old man.
    You are apping the MACC. –Din Merican

  3. Once again the White Rajah (or rather the White-haired Rajah….) rules in Sarawak… all state assets at his disposal for a 10% commission… so what is the MACC waiting for? MACC can pound on the small ikan bilis in a jiff but drag their feet with excuses of “lack of evidence” etc to pursue these giant white sharks!

    Do the right thing Najib, why are you afraid of Taib mahmud pulling PBB out of the BN? Worse to worse, you lose the elections thats all but at least you save Sarawak and Malaysia forever, macamana – ada brani?

  4. There is a lack of political will to deal with the corrupt. People like Sarawak’s Chief Minister Pehin Sri Taib Mahmud and others are allowed to operate with impunity. The MACC and the AG’s Office have failed us when they do not act in the public interest. –Din Merican

  5. Oh how I wish the opposition make it in this coming GE even if they make it underhandedly or by whatever means so that the new government can take the appropriate action.
    To quote Rafizi to give Tiab and his cronies a holiday at Sungei Buluh together with najib and Rosma. In fact Rosma and her sister will have a lot of time to compare notes all behind closed doors.
    It was infuriating to hear and see those lawyers (well they are lawyers, so what so surprising) both in Sarawak and London laughingly confirm how easy it was to avoid the long hand (in this case the amputated hand) of the Law.
    Gani patil, MACC what the f… are you doing,

  6. Seriously, Mr. Din. If I were MACC, I would go on medical leave for the rest of the year. Do you think I am stupid to fry my own arse to prosecute this case? I’m only earning a monthly salary.
    If you can’t do your job, you have two options: quit or resign or I will fire you.–Din Merican

  7. If MACC or he other law enforcement agency is based on evidence, then Najib and Mahathir would be also arrested and charged. Najib for obstructing justice, corruption and potential murder. Mahathir for high treason to the people of Sabah and Malaysia.

    Who are we kidding? – WE HAVE ALWAYS KNOWN THIS IS HOW ALL UMNO/BN politician behave. Without a doubt ALL Ketua Cawangan and above were corrupted and guilty of these things probably since the start of Mahathir’s administration…

  8. I don’t know about you guys, but all these revelations are nothing new. Especially when it comes to conies, proxies, offshore slush accounts and black-marketeering. In fact, most of the the so-called heavy-hitter billionaires locally do exactly that. How else to create a Malaysia Boleh and One Bankrupt Malaysia? Bersih, Cekap dan Amanah, ever since Octo’s tentacles started to spread and grasp and Singaporeans grew rich on the backs of ignorant indigenous peasants of the whole region.

    If you think MACC or CCID can or will do anything – you are either incredibly naive or a proverbial amphibian under the tempurung. To empower and enable proper rule of Law and transparency – change the freakin’ Establishment and status quo.

    So tell me: Quo vadis, cry babies? Blame it on the politicians.

  9. This CM is just one of the many big sharks. If MACC is functional, then their offices will be drown with files to handle, so best is NA. Only a change of regime will be able to prosecute these sharks, I hope.

  10. Even if these BN cronies are caught with their hands in the till nothing will happen. Look at anak mami Sharizat. When drilled in court she has the audacity to question the prosecuting officer.

    These little devils are not afraid of the laws – Umno-made laws, which are meant for minions like you and I who “kais pagi makan pagi, kais petang makan petang” and some, “kais malam makan malam.”

    I hope the day will come when they are being put out of pasture for GOOD.

  11. Taib will claim it’s all hearsay, and he’s not responsible for what 3rd parties may say. The Land Office and State Exco documents will show that the land was properly sold to Taib’s cousins.

    The only way to convict Taib will be if someone is willing to testify against him in court and produces proof of corrupr acts. The better way is to follow the money trail and see if any ended up in Taib’s bank account. Another way is to get the Income Tax Dept to ask Taib to account for his unexplained wealth, based on his known income as CM. (Remember Al capone who got done in for not filing his tax returns?).For that to happen, we need guts from the MACC. And who in Putrajaya will give the orders, given that everyone’s hands from the top down, are tainted?

    we are all of 1 Race, the Human Race

  12. Lies, damned lies, and the video is doctored. A cheap attempt to sully the reputation of these illustrious personalities. The opposition is desperate and will stoop
    to anything to come to power.

    Take them to court and see how we’ll handle them. Just like Cowrijat. So smooth was her performance it left the judge dumbstruck. Instead of throwing her into the slammer for contempt of court.

    Long live UMNO. Long live Najib.
    Taib Mahmud Zindabad.

  13. what anak rakyat? in Malay culture bribery and corruption is tolerated. What are you talking about? It is the Chinese culture that this is documented through out the world as being their practice. The malays have learnt this . This is a learnt behaviour .

  14. yes, don’t blame the politicians but blame the misinformed souls and legal aliens for voting in these types of politicians. this is a country where the citizens vote not for good governance but for handouts and to legalize corruption. they are so naive that those in power could bring in millions of aliens to vote for them, to take away their livelihoods, dilute their rights and make them a minority in their own country.

    in this game the real losers are the malays…………serves you right??

  15. Hey Kat, where have you been..?
    I hope that Bean and his Lancelot jibes didn’t get to you.

    Hmm.., while it’s true that the Chinese turn bribery into an Artform – it’s also true that the indigenous people have turned it into a Science; i.e. it’s repeatable under strict/initial conditions and considerations.

    Cowrijat? Haha.. Good one Mr Bo!

  16. Viewing the tape, there is circumstantial evidence for the allegations made. But to get to the direct evidence needed to put the guy in the slammer, you need a witness and a witness protection program. It is time Malaysia looks at plea bargaining and make it legal. Offer this witness immunity from prosecution in return for his testimony.

    But then MACC is not interested in justice. What else is new?

  17. Get the guy on tax evasion?? Gimme a break!

    The IRD has no prosecutorial powers, a regular government department and is not an independent agency the last time I checked. Unlike the IRS over here. You don’t mess with the IRS. They prosecute you for tax evasion and put you in the slammer if you don’t pay up.

    There is no way this Taib Mahmud could account for his billions that have gone unreported over the years. You can expect him to have a team of tax experts working on those 24/7 but all you need is one case involving a relatively small sum.

  18. Frankly, I do wonder even if Pakatan take over government, would Taib be penalised? That’s because Taib has acheived God status. And also because it’s seemingly impossible to thrash PBB dominance over Sarawak due to the incompetence of PKR under the leadership of Anwar. There is a possible an undertable deal would be made between Anwar & Taib. If only some SNAP members see the light & proceed with the merger with DAP, strenghtening DAP clout in Sarawak, then only we can see a brand new Sarawak

  19. Will their God condone and forgive their despicable acts? Aren’t they afraid of what’s coming to them, may not be in this life, but hereafter? Have they not an ounce of conscience? Has their religion meant nothing to them? When is enough enough? Will they ever realise that they will take nothing into the next world but a certain judgment? Will their God greet and welcome them into His heavenly eternity? Have they not heard that it’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle that for the rich to enter heaven? Won’t you, Mr Taib and your family, stop and ponder before it’s too late?

  20. For drugs we have the death sentence …why not for such corruption…?
    In China its the firing squad…after a quick trial…

  21. Why are you lot screaming about MACC being useless la, toothless la, this la, that la. MACC is indeed hopeless, dont you lot know that???

    Hello … this is Malaysia la.

  22. Kathy, how dare you stereotype all Chinese as corrupt and practise it as a culture? Are you saying only the Chinese are corrupt and all Malays are then corrupt because it is a learnt culture (presumably from the Chinese). You must be sick!

  23. Most people can almost predict that MACC will act very quickly to clear Taib Mahmud and NFA this case. Go MACC ! Go !.

  24. Hi CLF, have been watching the country from afar and wondering whats gonna give, if anything. seems like we have a new year but nothing new for M’sia . In fact just getting worse and worse. I suppose its the purging first , then good times?

    This thread I couldn’t help myself. It makes me SO angry at the nonchalant theft of the people.

    Nah, am cool with Mr Bean.
    Good to have you back. Jangan merajuk.–Din Merican

  25. Keep on documenting and compiling evidence on wrong doing and crimes committed while holding high political office.

    These will come in handy one day (when regime change finally comes)!

    e.g. Secret police and torturers in fascist states and communist police states damn themselves because of their meticulous record-keeping.
    When regime change comes, the files kept by the Special Branch files will be very eye-opening! (So when the East German police state fell, the people massed around the STASI headquarters and prevented documents from being destroyed. We will need similar people power phenomena when the
    UMNO Baru-BN kleptocratic regime finally falls).

  26. Our politicians are all about “what is in for me” rather that for the people they served. They are too impatient and lack strategy. Most are opportunists with goals of enriching themselves. Its seem to be the norms BN has successfully cultured. Anyway, what is new?

    Pakatan is the changing agent. It is a start for voters to use Pakatan to clean the institutions, to make room for better quality leaders. If Pakatan fails, voters will dismiss their service comes election. But now, if voters fail to exercise their votes dismiss/fire BN now than the onus of Malaysia failure rest on the voters not the politicians.

    Aspiring politicians who are sincere in serving the people first, not colour, race, religion or creed should take a few cues from LKY. Go read his books. There was a part where he explained how he took a step at at time to beat his opponents/adversaries. Some say he sleeps with his enemy, the then communist. It’s strategy.

  27. Hi Dato’, thank you. Tak merajuk at all. Nice to be back. Hopefully Dato’ something positive will come off thsi and relevant peole will be investigated but more imporantly the people’s money will be returned to them.

  28. Kathy,
    you might be right about the bribery culture of the chinese. But you forgot to mention (or remind yourself) that the malay have learnt this and in many ways bettered (and battered) their chinese counterparts nowadays.
    By the way, I still remember my primary school textbook saying that the malay are from the China province of Yunnan.

  29. “Hey Kat, where have you been..? I hope that Bean and his Lancelot jibes didn’t get to you” — CLF

    What have got against women who love horses CLF??

    And Kat, you’re my kind of gal. So you go gal ! Don’t let CLF be in your way. If he wants to ride he has to go find his own horse.

  30. Not sure how right it is. But the Chinese used to give anypow for anyone helping them or when they need something, or even when they meet for the first time. It’s out of good will. They used to trade gifts during visits either. You can say that it is part of their culture, now is Chinese culture, which has been commercialised by modern day practises called BRIBES.

    Now the master of this nation is the Malay, thus as the Chinese carries on their “practises”, the Malay learned. After sometime, when the Chinese fails to come with gift/bribes, then Malay questioned. So, BN is not wrong after all to say that these practises are parts of Malaysian cultures.

    Sorry lah, don’t crucify, hehe.

  31. err before you guys jump up and down getting all indignant. I said it is well documented that “you scratch my back , I scratch your back: IS in the chinese culture. All this while on Dato’s blog havent we hantam the malays who do it too. Whats good for the goose ( to be hantam) is good for the gander thanks. Yes the malays have learnt and made it ‘better’ a Science but it all started with the chinese way of doing things. Comprende.

    Get off your high horse. So, when we hantam the malays for doing it , its okay but we cannot hantam the culture that started it all.

  32. err okay Hang Jebat, had your say? good, now just live with it. It started from the chinese way of doing things, this bribery thing and now others have learnt it. Live with it. err or dont. you choose lah.

  33. Daniel, I havent forgotten. We have said everything we need ot say about this against those in governance who do this . It is wrong. WRONG. CRIMINAL. and when you guys have had enough of their cheating you guys of your own money, make sure all of them are caught, their assets frozen, and charge them all. Elect honest people , Statesmen, those who understand that being in public office is about service to others.

  34. I very much doubt that corruption is inheritable and as a culture if it is only practised by the chinese. corruption is a tool to become rich without working for it, which anybody can use.
    the chinese are dexterous and intelligent and if they can’t go further with normal means they’ll resort to anything.

    Phua Kai Lit,
    why talk about the German Democratic Republic?
    after Chancellor Helmut Kohl lost after 16 years of marathon governing and corruption, they destroyed countless files and put a drills through harddisks of the administration, overnight.
    after 55 marathon years of umno-bn regime what can we expect??

    The Bonfire of Vanities!??

  35. Kathy
    I am not sure if it is a Chinese Culture. To please high officials mainly occurs during Qing Dynasty which rules for hundred years. They are not chinese but manchurians. They are are absorbed and are considered as Chinese just as those blue eyed Muslims from the Western region of China if you want to consider them as Chinese.
    Another theory is too many “barbarians” trying to penetrate the Great wall of China and gifts are given to placate everyone – outside and inside.
    How about today in the West? Lobbist’s Services are FOC? Mahatail has to pay someone to meet President George.

  36. I’m not defending the chinese or wanna talk bad about the malay.
    I’m just saying that you don’t have to have such reaction when anakrakyat said what he said.
    We all have to accept that it has now become the “Culture” of many people in Malaysia, be it chinese, malay, indian, murut, etc.
    I brought up the primary school textbook merely to stress that not only we are all guilty of this, we are also from the same place after all (if the textbook was right)

  37. Ok. thanks for that harkis. I am willing to learn if I am taught. Of course, everywhere is about money isnt it harkis. but dont tell me to tell off one but not allow me to do so with another. that is simply not fair. worng is worng. The West is never 100 % , I have alwyas said that but the difference is , when they are caught out, they will face legal consequences but our culture? in the majority , closes an eye. ( for now at least)

  38. well Daniel thats not what anak rakyat said. thanks. I agree it has become a culture but anak rakyat squarely puts it on the malays. So I am entitled to my reply as he is to his assertion.

    my final say is I agree it has become a culture that has now stolen from the children of M’sia and we need to restore the imbalance, right the wrongs. We are , at least , agreed on that score , I believe.

  39. Scientific way of corruption is certainly ugly, dimwitted and distasteful.
    Nowadays, the Chinapek in PRC, buy terribly expensive pieces of ancient calligraphy, genuine antiquities and even fossilized dinosaur eggs/skeletons as ‘Lai Xi’ for their controllers. Why? Recession proof!

    You guys are way behind the curve. That is why art simply triumphs over boring Science and Plagiarism. Are kerises or kain songket that expensive?

  40. You guys don’t mess with Kat (or Khatijah). She made a debut on Dato’s blog with both hands swinging sometime ago. She gave me a kick in the groin which hurts to this day for making what she thought were sexist remarks. And Dato threw me under the bus. The entire Singh community came out of the woodworks clamoring for my expulsion from the blog. Frank and Tok Cik deserted me. Remember that one Kat?

    So you guys don’t mess with her. If you still want to do so, I suggest you put on your iron ‘chastity’ belt and throw away the key.

  41. Well Mr Bean, who else is going to put the boys in line once in a while.

    Yes , how can I forget that. You went err, quiet on me for a while. We had a stoush and now we are buddies. Thanks to Dato’s generosity and leeway here.

    I havent been here for so long and in one swoop, I have made up for it. Good luck Malaysia . If all are as passionate as the one’s here, we are on the right track , I dare say.

  42. There are a few things that can happen. 1) If Sarawak falls to the opposition but BN retains the federal government, there goes the White Rajah; or 2) If Sarawak stays BN but the opposition gains the federal government, there goes the White Rajah; or 3) If Sawarak and the federal government goes to the opposition, there goes the White Rajah; and 4) If Sarawak and the federal government stays BN, the White Rajah stays. So 4 possible outcomes, only 1 is positive to the White Rajah. I bet everyone including within BN and the MACC is just waiting to fry such a high profile target. Why? For BN, it is clear its a one-man show in Sarawak when it would have been preferable if it was a many-man show. Everyone should benefit not just one. Price of being greedy. For MACC, its so big and obvious a fish to fry that it embarasses them every single day that they can’t do a thing. If it was a low profile case, they probably could live with it. Moral of the story. Be greedy but don’t be too greedy. When being greedy, make sure to share around with outsiders not just the inner circle. And always know when to stop and where to draw the line. When its time to leave, leave.

  43. Kathy

    Malays in someways are very good – relax and tidak apa. I have seen this at the Border. This pakchik come enter Malaysia as a taxi passenger without a passport or border pass when he passes through the Border Control Point at Bkt Kayu Hitam. He say something and pointing here and there for few minutes, Semua Ok, boleh lulus, boleh masuk.
    Try coming in and out of China? The immigration will stare at you and your photo in the passport to make sure you are the holder of the passport. Another incidence is this HK lady. Clear HK with her ID (smart card – smarter than malaysia ?) and cross the linkbridge across the river about 100m away. Wanted to enter China but discover her HK ID is missing. Even as a citizen of PRC, no entry into China and has to return to HK with checking her background again. Malaysia immigration – too chin chai even do not bother to look at you. Just chop2.
    Kathy – you are sure Lobbists will be punished if they are caught? What happen to the guy, Kutty paid him to get an audiience with George Bush?

  44. Taib is too big a fish for MACC to fry. MACC does not have a big enough frying pan for Taib. MACC doesn’t even have the guts to begin investigation let alone prosecute Taib. Why? Because Taib can have Sarawak Immigration deny entry to MACC officers from KL.

    The moral of the story is if you want to ensure longevity be BIG. Just like the big banks, can’t fail because the government won’t let you fail and will protect you and bail you out.

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