PAC adjourns 1MDB audit inquiry to next month

Kenneth Tee
Former audit performance director Saadatul Nafisah Bashir Ahmad leaves a Public Accounts Committee (PAC) meeting in Parliament December 6, 2018. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 6 — The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) probe into the alleged tampering of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) audit report has wrapped for the year after three days of proceedings beginning Tuesday.

PAC deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh said the committee called up former government sector audit director Saadatul Nafisah Bashir Ahmad today to provide her oral statement to assist the committee’s probe.

“Saadatul Nafisah was grilled for two hours today and her testimony will definitely help PAC reach a decision.

“I can’t say anything on what she disclosed to us because I am bound by the standing orders but what was given is useful to PAC in making an accurate decision whether the report is a draft or final copy,” he said to reporters in Parliament today.

Wong, however, said the questioning revolved around how the alleged amendments came about and the circumstances surrounding them.

He said all of the witnesses submitted good statements and the committee was satisfied with their answers.

Public Accounts Committee (PAC) deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh speaks to reporters in Parliament December 6, 2018. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

He also confirmed that former 1MDB chief executive officer Arul Kanda Kandasamy and former chief secretary to the government Tan Sri Ali Hamsa will be called up to testify in the future.

PAC chairman Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee yesterday said the proceeding will resume in January, with a view to obtaining a summary by February.

Auditor-General Tan Sri Madinah Mohamad was grilled for almost four hours by the PAC yesterday after her predecessor Tan Sri Ambrin Buang was cross-examined on Monday over the alleged tampering of the audit report of the state investment firm that was submitted in 2016.

Ambrin had maintained that the so-called “tampered” audit report revealed by successor Madinah was “merely a draft”, a report claimed.

He reportedly maintained that his final audit report on scandal-plagued 1MDB was not doctored.

Last month, Madinah made a stunning revelation that her predecessor’s audit report had been tampered with prior to its presentation to the PAC.

Among others, she alleged that a paragraph stating fugitive financier Jho Low’s presence at 1MDB board meetings was removed on the instructions of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s office.

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