Tunku Aziz: Thor­ough probe will bring clo­sure

New Straits Times - - News -

KUALA LUMPUR: A thor­ough in­ves­ti­ga­tion will bring proper clo­sure to claims of the Bank Ne­gara Malaysia (BNM) for­eign ex­change losses in the 1990s, for­mer DAP vice-chair­man Tunku Ab­dul Aziz Tunku Ibrahim said.

He said the set­ting up of a task force to in­ves­ti­gate the scan­dal was timely as the rakyat de­served to know past fi­nan­cial scan­dals dur­ing for­mer prime min­is­ter Tun Dr Ma­hathir Mo­hamad’s ten­ure.

“The task force is a good thing that will set the ball rolling, a pre­lude to a Royal Com­mis­sion of In­quiry if it be­comes nec­es­sary.

“It is im­por­tant that this mat­ter be thor­oughly in­ves­ti­gated and brought to a proper clo­sure so that the peo­ple can es­tab­lish what re­ally took place and whether the law had been bro­ken.

He said the com­po­si­tion of the task force was ap­pro­pri­ate, com­pris­ing peo­ple with the right skills and ex­per­tise.

He sug­gested that the task force ques­tion for­mer BNM gov­er­nor Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz as she was the branch man­ager for BNM in Lon­don in the 1990s.

Tunku Aziz said he was in­vited to a din­ner by BNM branch of­fi­cers in New York in the late 1980s and felt it was un­usual for a cen­tral bank to have over­seas branches. He had asked the of­fi­cers what BNM was do­ing.

“They told me that BNM was tak­ing po­si­tions in forex, and I thought that it was wrong for a cen­tral bank to do so as it is gam­bling,” he said.

Led by for­mer chief sec­re­tary to the gov­ern­ment Tan Sri Mohd Sidek Has­san, the task force com­prised Malaysian Anti-Cor­rup­tion Com­mis­sion deputy chief com­mis­sioner Datuk Azam Baki; Po­lice Com­mer­cial Crimes De­part­ment di­rec­tor Datuk Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani; Se­cu­ri­ties Com­mis­sion Malaysia chair­man Tan Sri Ran­jit Ajit Singh; Re­tire­ment Fund Inc (KWAP) chief ex­ec­u­tive officer Datuk Wan Ka­maruza­man Wan Ah­mad; Pe­mu­dah co-chair­man Tan Sri Saw Choo Boon; and lawyer Datuk Seri Ja­hab­erdeen Mo­hamed Yunoos.

Fi­nance Min­istry’s Strate­gic In­vest­ment Di­vi­sion di­rec­tor Datuk Dr Yu­sof Is­mail is the task force sec­re­tary and sec­re­tar­iat head.

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