KUALA LUMPUR: The government should state whether the settlement between the government, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and investment bank Goldman Sachs is protected by the Official Secrets Act 1972, says Subang MP Wong Chen.
Wong, in expressing disappointment, said details on the US$1.4bil (RM5.8bil) settlement should not be withheld by the government on the basis of “confidentiality clause”, as MPs have the right to scrutinise details on the deal with Goldman Sachs.
“Hiding the truth and facts of this settlement from Malaysians will amount to causing a second injury to all Malaysians, who demand justice and complete restitution of the stolen money.
“I now ask the law minister to state whether the settlement agreement is an official secrets document, protected by the OSA 1972,” he said, referring to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law) Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan.
Wong was speaking to reporters during a press conference in Parliament Wednesday (Nov 18), in response to a Parliamentary reply by Takiyuddin dated Tuesday (Nov 17), saying that the government cannot provide details on the settlement due to confidentiality clauses.
Wong also asked Takiyuddin to reconsider his position on the matter and allow a bipartisan committee of 10 MPs to scrutinise the agreement.
“If the minister insists that this viewing will amount to a breach of the confidentiality clause, I would like the Attorney General to issue a public legal opinion on the matter.
“I also very much doubt that Goldman Sachs, the complicit party in 1MDB crimes, will dare to take any legal action to prevent elected Malaysian MPs access to view the settlement agreement.”
Wong also appealed to the Auditor-General to intervene and audit the settlement agreement to ensure accountability in the government and to protect public interest.
The settlement between the government and Goldman Sachs was achieved in July, where both sides have reportedly said the deal includes a US$2.5bil (RM10.4bil) cash payout by the investment bank and a guarantee by the bank to return at least US$1.4bil (RM5.8bil) from 1MDB assets seized around the world.
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