October 24, 2018
Sources claim envoy punished for not securing Jho Low’s sister’s release–Shame on Wisma Putra
EXCLUSIVE | A former Malaysian High Commissioner, Dr. Ilango Karuppanan (pic above) to Singapore was purportedly recalled and placed in cold storage for refusing to pursue the release of fugitive financier Jho Low’s sister in 2016, according to highly-placed sources in Putrajaya.
The sources claimed that May Lin and her husband were detained by the Singapore Police in May of that year, and former premier Najib Abdul Razak’s aide had instructed the Malaysian envoy “to do the necessary” to secure the couple’s release.
However, Najib told Malaysiakini that he had not issued any such instruction nor heard of the incident. “There was no reason for me to protect Jho Low. As I have explained to Malaysiakini before, Jho Low represented the Arabs, not me.
“The officer (who supposedly relayed the instruction to the then Malaysian high commissioner in Singapore) is no longer with me. He is in Wisma Putra now and part of the current government,” he said when asked to comment on the allegation.
According to the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, the high commissioner also received a call from May Lin’s father over the matter.
Malaysiakini was told that the attempt to secure May Lin’s release did not go through, however, due to the high commissioner’s “reluctance” to use his diplomatic access.
“The High Commissioner had contacted the Singapore Police, who confirmed they had May Lin in custody.
“However, they also put a request to him not to interfere as there was an ongoing investigation under the republic’s laws,” said the sources.
The sources claimed that when the High Commissioner refused to pursue the matter, Putrajaya withdrew him from the commission the following year.
Checks by Malaysiakini revealed that the High Commissioner in question was Ilango Karuppanan , who served in the Malaysian mission to Singapore from April 25, 2016 to April 30, 2017.
According to Wisma Putra’s website, Ilango had the second shortest stint among other Malaysian High high commissioners to Singapore. The shortest tenure was that of his successor Zulkifli Adnan, who was appointed on Oct 10, 2017 but had his service terminated after the Pakatan Harapan government came into power.
Sources said Ilango was reassigned to the National Institute of Public Administration (Intan) after he was recalled by Wisma Putra.
According to the sources, this was considered “cold storage” for someone of his stature in the civil service .While in cold storage, he obtained his doctorate from The University of Malaya.
Meanwhile, Ilango declined to speak on the matter, saying that as a civil servant, he was not authorised to speak to the media. “I cannot tell you (the press) anything as I am a civil servant. I hope you understand,” he said.
Singapore Police have also chosen to remain tight-lipped regarding the purported arrest of May Lin and her husband.
“Dear Sir, I refer to your email dated 16 October 2018 directed to Singapore Police Force. We are unable to accede to your request for comments. Thank you for your understanding,” it said in a response to Malaysiakini‘s e-mail.
Low has been described as the mastermind behind the 1MDB scandal. Malaysian authorities have charged both him and his father in absentia over allegations of plundering the state-owned fund.
Malaysiakini had also attempted to contact May Lin for comments.