Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Rosmah received RM6.5 million from businessman, ex-aide tells court

Rizal Mansor says the cash was delivered in two batches of RM5 million and RM1.5 million.

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Rizal Mansor told the High Court in Kuala Lumpur yesterday that Rosmah Mansor received RM6.5 million in cash from the former managing director of Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd, Saidi Abang Samsudin, as a reward for helping the company secure the solar hybrid project in Sarawak.

Rizal, who is Rosmah’s former special officer, said the cash, in tranches of RM5 million and RM1.5 million, was sent to Rosmah separately at her official residence at the Seri Perdana Complex in Putrajaya at the end of December 2016 and at Langgak Duta in September 2017.

He said at the end of December 2016, Saidi told him he was prepared to pay RM5 million as part of the RM187.5 million promised to Rosmah.

He said Rosmah later ordered him to send the cash to her official residence as she was there at the time.

Upon his arrival, he said, she ordered two butlers to carry the bags containing the RM5 million into the house.

“I met Rosmah with the two bags. She later asked me, ‘How much?’ I replied ‘Five’, to mean RM5 million.

“Rosmah did not open the bags but told the butlers to send them to her room. I later left the place,” he said, reading from his witness statement during a direct examination by deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib.

Rizal, who is the 21st prosecution witness, said several days later, he asked Rosmah if she was satisfied with the RM5 million from Saidi.

“She (Rosmah) told me that she needed lots of money for politics and told me with the meaning ‘Get them to take care of you’.

“‘Them’ referred to Saidi and Rayyan (Rayyan Radzwill Abdullah, Saidi’s business partner).

“I thought she (Rosmah) said that thinking that I wanted some of the money for myself as a reward. Rosmah did not say that Saidi had promised to give me RM25 million, and I had received RM500,000 at that time,” he said.

He said after receiving the RM5 million, Rosmah frequently asked him about the remaining payment to be made by Jepak.

“I received the queries from her (Rosmah) as an instruction to expedite the process to obtain the remaining payment promised. As such, I had to press Saidi to expedite the remaining payment to Rosmah,” he said.

Rizal said Saidi told him one day that he had brought RM1.5 million in cash in two backpacks which were later placed in the second hall of Rosmah’s house in Langgak Duta, in early September 2017.

“I also saw Rosmah ordering her butlers to carry the two backpacks brought by Saidi to her room,” he said.

He said he also knew of a quarrel between Saidi and Rayyan after Saidi failed to pay the share demanded by Rayyan in the solar hybrid project.

“What I understand was that Saidi had taken their money, and Rayyan asked me to reveal Saidi’s misdeed to Rosmah. I told Rayyan to settle the matter himself with Saidi and I did not want to take sides in the quarrel.

“As I refused to support Rayyan, he threatened me, saying he would disclose the involvement of Rosmah, Najib Razak, Aazmey (Pekan Umno secretary Ahmad Aazmey Abu Talib) and I in the award of the solar hybrid project to Jepak.

“Rayyan also told me that he would make sure I went to jail for my involvement in the matter,” he said.

According to Rizal, after the 14th general election and after the matter was exposed by Sarawak Report, he was investigated for his involvement in the award of the project to Jepak.

“After finding out that Saidi and Rayyan had been detained by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), I panicked and decided to flee to Jakarta, Indonesia.

“Eventually, I decided to return to Malaysia after finding out that I cannot be running away forever and need to face the situation.

“On that day, I was present at MACC (for investigation). I was detained and remanded for six days. After that, I was charged in court on four counts,” he said.

Rosmah is facing one charge of soliciting RM187.5 million and two counts of receiving bribes totalling RM6.5 million from Saidi.

According to the charge, Rosmah received the bribes through Rizal as a reward for helping Jepak secure the hybrid photovoltaic solar system integrated project, as well as the maintenance and operation of diesel gen-sets for 369 rural schools in Sarawak worth RM1.25 billion from the education ministry through direct negotiation.

The acts were allegedly committed at Lygon Cafe, Sunway Putra Mall, Jalan Putra; Rosmah’s residence at Jalan Langgak Duta, Taman Duta and at Seri Perdana, Persiaran Seri Perdana, Precinct 10, Putrajaya between January 2016 and September 2017.

The trial before justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan continues on Monday.

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