1MDB: Sarawak Report published authentic minutes of meeting

1MDB: Sarawak Report published authentic minutes of meeting
PHOTO: Reuters

PETALING JAYA - 1Malaysia Development Bhd president Arul Kanda Kandasamy confirms that a document published in Sarawak Report's latest article on the fund, is an authentic minutes of its board meeting.

The group executive director also said that he had no qualms of being questioned in detail on the matter for he wanted to put it to rest.

He said he would respond to the allegations raised in the article when the Public Accounts Commit­tee meets.

In the report, which Sarawak Report claimed to be based on the minutes of the Jan 12 meeting, it said that Arul misled the board by giving detailed assurances to its members that there was indeed "cash" in the Brazen Sky account at BSI bank in Singapore.

Yesterday, Arul in a statement said, the article published selectively extracted materials and contained "serious and unfounded allegations".

He, however, confirmed that the online portal "appears to have published an authentic 1MDB document, namely minutes of a Jan 12, 2015 board meeting.

"This was the first 1MDB board meeting I attended, a week after I joined the company on Jan 5, 2015," said Arul.

At that meeting, Arul said he informed the board that "the redemption of fund units happened in cash for an amount of US$940million (S$1.31 billion)", a statement he made based on his understanding of events that took place before his time at 1MDB.

"However, upon further investigation and verification, it became clear that this was a misunderstanding, which I then clarified to the board and our shareholder, the Ministry of Finance.

"This clarification is clearly recorded in subsequent board minutes and can be verified," Arul added.

Arul said he had also confirmed that the remaining amount of US$1.1billion had been redeemed in full via a Jan 13 press statement.

"What was unfortunately not made clear was that the redemptions happened partly in cash and partly through the sale of fund units, with cash payment being deferred," he said.

Arul said this important distinction caused a misinterpretation of his statement on two other occasions this year - first during a Business Times interview on Feb 9, and by the Finance Ministry in a Parliamentary answer on March 12.

"I have explained in detail the sequence of events to the Audit Department and to 1MDB's auditors, Deloitte, as part of their thorough and professional review of 1MDB's past transactions," Arul added.

Arul stated that he had made an open and public claim of responsibillionity in June for the misunderstanding.

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