Aman Palestin probe: MACC looking into short-term expenses and funds allegedly given to other firms

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is looking into the revenue expenditures of charitable NGO Aman Palestin Bhd.

It is also looking at the expenses of various companies – among them a tour and travel agency, a shooting academy and a gold mining firm – that allegedly received funds meant for the Palestinian people, a well-placed source says.

ALSO READ: Aman Palestin funds can only be accessed after probe is done, says Azam

The source said others thought to have received the funds include a tech company, a research centre and a media agency, none of which had any direct connection with aid for Palestinians.

These companies were allegedly run from the public donations received, the source said, adding that public donations handed to Aman Palestin were allegedly used to buy gold, cryptocurrency, properties and land.

"From the account books of Aman Palestin, it was found that operations and management fees were over RM400,000 per month.

"MACC is also looking at the leakages and exactly how much was actually channelled to help those really in need in Palestine," the source added.

The MACC launched its probe of Aman Palestin in October following a report by a news portal that many stakeholders were dissatisfied with the NGO's approach in overseeing donation collections.

ALSO READ: Azam: MACC ready to justify freezing of Aman Palestin accounts

On Nov 23, the MACC said over RM25mil in 42 bank accounts under the NGO had been frozen following an investigation into allegations that it misused public funds.

On Oct 27, Aman Palestin gave the MACC three days to unfreeze its accounts or a legal suit would be filed.

In response, MACC chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki said the MACC was prepared to reveal to the courts its justification for freezing the accounts.

When contacted, Aman Palestin Berhad's lawyer Muhammad Rafique Rashid Ali declined to comment on the ongoing investigation.

“We respect the powers possessed by the MACC in conducting the investigation,” he said when contacted.

Muhammad Rafique, however, stressed that releasing RM10mil in winter aid would help the NGO continue to assist Palestinians in the ongoing conflict.

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