Najib: I merely asked for a home under the law, not a RM100mil ‘gift’

PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Najib Razak says he merely asked for a home accorded to all former prime ministers under the law in response to a supposed “gift” worth RM100mil for his services.

He was responding to Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who queried in Parliament over a land and home worth RM100mil, supposedly a gift to Najib as a former premier.

Najib said that his office had merely applied for a home after the 14th General Election as stated under an Act amended during the tenure of Dr Mahathir as premier.

"The government offered me three pieces of land to choose from so I did. The location near the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka was chosen because I felt that the location was most suitable for my family,” he said in a Facebook post.

He claimed the value of RM100mil was given by a pro-Perikatan Nasional portal just before the Melaka state polls, while the application was made in 2018 after the 14th General Election.

Najib added that the request was not approved by the government of the day and that he did not ask the government to spend money to buy land.

"I didn't ask for a gift of RM100mil from the government or asked them to spend money on land; only for a home that is given to all former prime ministers," he said.

The former prime minister also took offence to Dr Mahathir's remark of him not contributing to the country, listing down his accomplishments throughout his tenure as the sixth premier.

Earlier today Dr Mahathir asked Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz, who was wrapping-up his ministerial reply on Budget 2022, if the RM100mil “gift” to Najib was part of the Budget.

Dr Mahathir said it was made known to him that RM60mil was for the purchase of a piece of land and RM40mil was to construct a home for Najib.

When pressed further on details of the RM100mil, Zafrul said that the question should be directed to the Prime Minister's Department.

He said the department was in charge of allowances and privileges accorded to former prime ministers as provided under the Members of Parliament (Remuneration) Act 1980.

Several other Opposition MPs also stood up to question Zafrul including Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman (Warisan-Sepanggar) who asked where the allocation would come from if it was not included in the Budget.

Zafrul said a separate Bill would have to be tabled if there are any additional expenditures that were not included under the present Budget.

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