No receipts from Umno, BN for RM6.5 mil ‘political donation’, court told

Rosmah Mansor is charged with soliciting RM187.5 million from a businessman. (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: A businessman never obtained receipts from Umno or Barisan Nasional for a RM6.5 million “political donation” he allegedly made to Rosmah Mansor, the High Court heard today.

Saidi Abang Samsudin said this in response to a question by lead prosecutor Gopal Sri Ram during examination today.

Sri Ram: You made a political donation. Until today, did you get receipts from Umno or Barisan Nasional?

Saidi: No.

The 17th prosecution witness said he and his then business partner, Rayyan Radzwill Abdullah, had two meetings with Rosmah.

Sri Ram: Did the accused (Rosmah) reject when you made the political donation?

Saidi: No, she called Rizal Mansor to handle it.

Sri Ram: At the second meeting (Sept 7, 2017), when you brought two bags of money. Did she ask you to leave her house?

Saidi: She merely uttered “Hm”. That’s all.

Saidi said he and Rayyan had approached then education minister Mahdzir Khalid to secure a RM1.25 billion solar hybrid project in Sarawak but the outcome was futile.

In the prosecution’s opening statement, the court was told that both men managed to get support from Rosmah’s husband, then prime minister Najib Razak, for the project but that did not help speed up matters with the ministry.

Saidi said he and Rayyan then met Rosmah at her private residence in Langgak Duta here in January or February 2016.

Also present was Rizal, then Rosmah’s aide and who had arranged for the meeting.

“Rizal introduced both of us to Rosmah,” said Saidi, then managing director and majority shareholder of Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd.

Saidi, who read his 26-page witness statement, said he told Rosmah that he would give 10 % of the project cost as political donation.

“Rosmah responded that Umno needed money. She also asked Rizal to bring them to meet  a Desmond,” he said, adding that the meeting lasted only five minutes.

On Dec 20, 2016, Saidi said he delivered, through Rizal, the RM5 million in cash to the prime minister’s official residence in Putrajaya after the letter of award was issued to Jepak by the ministry.

He said the RM5 million was a loan from Builtamont International Sdn Bhd.

The solar contract was executed on June 20, 2017 and the ministry then released a series of payments to Jepak.

Saidi said he delivered another RM1.5 million in cash to the accused at her Langgak Duta residence on Sept 7, 2017.

Rosmah was charged with three counts of corruption for soliciting RM187.5 million from Saidi as an inducement to help the company secure the project through direct negotiation with the ministry.

She is also accused of receiving bribes amounting to RM6.5 million from Saidi between 2016 and 2017.

The hearing continues before judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan.