Ihsan Perdana used as conduit for CSR funds, MD tells Najib trial

Ihsan Perdana managing director Shamsul Anwar Sulaiman. (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court in the corruption and abuse of power trial of Najib Razak heard today that Ihsan Perdana Sdn Bhd’s bank account was used as a transit account for money to be kept before moving it out.

Ihsan Perdana managing director Shamsul Anwar Sulaiman said he was told this by Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia (YR1M) project director Dennis See Thuan Buan before RM40 million was credited into the company’s account.

“I asked for details from See but he declined to provide an explanation,” the 37th witness said when examined by deputy public prosecutor Muhammad Saifuddin Hashim Musaimi.

Shamsul, who read his witness statement, said he could not remember the exact date See came to meet him at his office.

The witness said RM40 million was deposited in Ihsan Perdana’s bank account in Affin Bank on Dec 24, 2014, and RM5 million each on Feb 5 and Feb 6 in 2015. The total was RM50 million.

Earlier, prosecution witnesses had testified that the money came from Gandingan Mentari Sdn Bhd Bhd.

Today, Shamsul said he did not know who deposited the RM50 million into Ihsan Perdana’s bank account.

A total of RM42 million from Ihsan Perdana’s account was later remitted into two account numbers, ending 1880 and 1906, at AmPrivate Banking-1MY, which were said to be under Najib’s name.

Najib faces six charges of money laundering and criminal breach of trust in the transfer of RM42 million to his account from SRC International Sdn Bhd, a former unit of 1MDB.

He is also accused of abusing his power as prime minister by giving government guarantees on SRC International’s RM4 billion loan from Retirement Fund Inc.

Earlier, Shamsul said then 1MDB CEO Shahrol Azral had asked him to set up a company to undertake corporate social responsibility (CSR)programmes for 1MDB at the instruction of Najib.

“The setting up of the company came about as the 1MDB board of directors found that there will be a potential conflict of interest if 1MDB undertook CSR programmes.”

He said Ihsan Perdana was set up after a name change for Gem Horizon Sdn Bhd in October 2011 to provide CSR programmes for 1MDB and YR1M.

Shamsul said on Sept 3, 2014, SRC appointed Ihsan Perdana as its CSR partner and was given a RM250,000 grant.

“After the appointment, we did not receive any instruction from SRC or additional funds, other than the RM250,000,” he said.

Further hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali will be fixed after  case management on Friday.