Malaysian MP defends meeting with 1MDB president

Malaysian MP defends meeting with 1MDB president
Tan Sri Shahrir Samad

JOHOR BARU: Barisan Nasional Backbenchers Club chairman Tan Sri Shahrir Samad has defended his meeting with 1Malaysia Development Bhd president and group executive director Arul Kanda Kandasamy, saying it was purely with the intention of getting the wider picture.

The Johor Baru MP said he was invited to meet Arul by Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan on Wednesday night at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur.

Shahrir told The Star at the Umno Johor Baru office yesterday that he only wanted to know more about 1MDB's present and future plans from Arul, especially the company's strategy to reduce its debt.

"Was it wrong for me to meet Arul?

"I wanted to know the company's plan and to give him my two-cents on better ways to trim debt," he said.

The meeting never touched on the Public Accounts Committee's (PAC) ongoing probe into 1MDB, he said.

As a MP, Shahrir said, he fully respected the PAC and supported its investigation of 1MDB.

He said that as BNBBC chairman, he had suggested to the Prime Minister to have the PAC and Auditor-General investigate 1MDB's dealings to help give a clearer picture to the public.

Asked if PAC should summon businessman Low Taek Jho, Shahrir said that it was unlikely to happen because PAC was more interested in 1MDB's earlier dealings.

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