KUALA LUMPUR: A witness told the High Court that the former 1MDB chief executive officer never entertained requests from officials from the Minister of Finance Incorporated (MoF Inc) for documents related to the joint-venture deal between 1MDB and PetroSaudi International Ltd (PSI).
In fact, Siti Zauyah Mohd Desa, 63, who was the Treasury’s deputy secretary-general, said Shahrol Azral Ibrahim Halmi treated them with disrespect.
The 26th prosecution witness said she had even complained about the matter to the then finance minister II Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah and the then Treasury secretary-general Wan Abdul Aziz Wan Abdullah, but no action was taken.
She said this during cross-examination by lawyer Shafee Abdullah, who is representing Najib Razak in the former prime minister’s corruption trial involving RM2.3 billion in 1MDB funds.
While she agreed with Shafee’s suggestion that Shahrol should have entertained the requests, she disagreed that he was rude.
Shafee: Can we say he (Shahrol) was rude?
Siti Zauyah: You said that word (rude). But (to me) his action was more disrespectful.
When asked whether she had complained about Shahrol to Najib, the witness said she did not as she had her own boss.
Shafee: I understand. I have a boss at home, too. But we cannot safely deduce that it was Najib who told Shahrol to act that way. Yes or no? As you had never told Najib the problem you were facing.
Siti Zauyah: It’s not my level to deal with the PM (Najib).
Shafee: How long this (disrespectful treatment) had been going on at 1MDB?
Siti Zauyah: Since its establishment.
Shafee: Until now?
Siti Zauyah: That, I have to ask who handles the portfolio.
Siti Zauyah retired from public service on Nov 14, 2019.
The trial was adjourned early after deputy public prosecutor Gopal Sri Ram told the court he was having gastric pain.
Najib, 69, is facing four charges of using his position to obtain bribes totalling RM2.3 billion in 1MDB funds and 21 charges of money laundering involving the same amount.
The trial before judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah continues on Sept 5.
Najib, who is now serving his 12-year jail term in the SRC International Sdn Bhd case, was seen leaving the Kuala Lumpur court complex at 4.20pm in a sports utility vehicle escorted by several police cars.
Tomorrow, he will be taken to court again for the trial of his 1MDB audit report tampering case with former 1MDB chief executive officer Arul Kanda Kandasamy. The hearing will be held before judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan.