Najib has soiled and stained Parliament for 90 minutes when he spoke as BNBBC Chairman on the 2021 Budget yesterday without giving an accounting of the 1MDB scandal

Former Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak soiled and stained Parliament for 90 minutes when he spoke as Barisan Nasional Backbenchers’ Club Chairman on the 2021 Budget yesterday.

In which Parliament of the world would a person who had been convicted on corruption, money-laundering and abuse of power be allowed to speak as a leader of Members of Parliament except in Malaysia?

Have Malaysians forgotten that Najib is infamous world-wide as the person responsible for the 1MDB financial scandal, and who was convicted by a Malaysian court on July 28 on several charges related to the 1MDB scandal concerning corruption, money-laundering and abuse of power and sentenced to 12 years’ jail and RM210 million?

There are no signs under the 2021 Budget that the government would step up efforts to restore Malaysia’s reputation as a nation of public integrity where anti-corruption measures would be taken seriously.

In the 2019 Transparency International (TI) Corruption Perception Index (CPI), Malaysia is ranked No. 51 with a score of 53, registering a single-year improvement six points for the TI CPI score and 10 placings in TI CPI ranking - the best performance for Malaysia in the past quarter of a century.

What can we expect of the 2020 TI CPI which will be released in January 2021? Can we look forward to another six-point improvement in TI CPI score and another 10-placing improvement in TI CPI ranking, i.e. a score 59 and a ranking of 41 in the TI CPI 2020?

On the same day that Najib soiled and stained Parliament with his 90-minute speech, well-known Malaysian economist Jomo Kwame Sundaram was warning that instead of the country improving after the 1MDB fiasco, the conditions are being created for many 1MDB scandals following the government move to allocate large sums to GLCs helmed by politicians without accountability or transparency.

Najib’s speech is all the more inexcusable as it was only last month that Goldman Sachs pleaded guilty in the United States to violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars U.S. companies from paying bribes to government officials abroad – in the case of “a massive global scheme to loot billions of dollars” from 1MDB and the subsequent use of those funds by senior Goldman bankers and their co-conspirators to pay billions of dollars in bribes to senior government officials and others around the world, particularly to “MO1”, who is none other than Najib himself.

In failing to give an accounting of the 1MDB scandal, Najib had failed Parliament and the nation.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri