Najib: Gifts to my family being used for PH propaganda

PETALING JAYA: Najib Razak has accused the Pakatan Harapan-run government of making unwarranted links to 1MDB and Jho Low to hold on to personal gifts to his family that were seized by the police a year ago.

He said Pakatan Harapan leaders were ignoring the rule of law by filing a civil suit for forfeiture of the goods, although the law stated that the goods must be returned if the authorities could not prove they had been bought with illicit funds.

“Instead of using criminal charges, they resorted to civil action in order to continue their propaganda and slander against me and my family,” said Najib.

Quoting from an affidavit filed in a court suit, Najib said three police officers had stated that their investigtions had revealed that some of the seized items were gifts made to him and his family.

The affidavits were filed in support of a government action to obtain forfeiture of the seized items.

Najib said the government’s action rested on the unfounded claim that he had received funds from 1Malaysia Development Bhd. and that therefore the items have been purchased with these funds.

“But it is not mentioned or evident in the government’s civil action how these funds were used to purchase these seized goods,” Najib said in a Facebook posting this evening.

The other ground for forfeiture was that the value of the confiscated assets was not commensurate with his total income, he said.”That was all.”

“It is even more amazing that the police officer in the affidavit stated that after they investigated, they found that some of these items were gifts given to me and my family. But the were not returned to him because of “not having strong evidence”.

Najib said police had questioned many of the gift-givers over the past year. Photographs of the boxes seized by the police clearly showed the name of the gift-giver on each box.

“Maybe we are guilty of not taking photos and asking the gift-givers to write and sign a gift confirmation letter?” he said sarcastically.

He said almost 2,000 guests had been present at his daughter’s wedding in 2015, among them corporate figures, national leaders such as President Jokowi of Indonesia, royalty, foreign representatives, and relatives. Some who were unable to attend had also sent gifts.

“But all these wedding gifts were seized by the PH government and are now being alleged to have been bought with 1MDB money or purchased by Jho Low.”

Najib pointed out that all the seized goods must be returned after one year if the authorities failed to prove that the goods were purchased with illegally-sourced funds.

But the government chose to take out a civil action for propaganda purposes. He said the affidavit showed that he had reported his income and paid to the Inland Revenue every year. “This at once refutes all PH propaganda that I have never reported my income to the government,” he said.