PETALING JAYA, 25 Feb 2009: The Selangor government has alleged inappropriate payments worth RM25 million for properties in Mecca, Saudi Arabia authorised by former Menteri Besar (MB) Datuk Seri Dr Mohammad Khir Toyo.
In a press statement issued late last night, current MB Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim’s office said that under Khir’s leadership in the previous administration, Permodalan Negeri Selangor Bhd (PNSB) paid RM25.6 million for 12 units of Al Marwah Tower Makkah properties between 17 and 19 Sept 2007.
Khir Toyo (Pic by johnleemk; source: Wikipedia) However, on record in the PNSB Directors’ Circular Resolution dated 14 Sept, approval was only given for the purchase of five units worth RM8.35 million.
Khalid’s office said the discrepancy was uncovered by external auditors going through PNSB’s 2007 accounts.
After paying the RM25.6 million, PNSB then received RM17.25 from an individual, who purportedly bought seven units. No official receipt was issued to acknowledge the sale by PNSB to the individual, whose name Khalid’s office did not reveal.
The transaction dates for PNSB’s sale of seven units to this individual was between 25 Sept and 3 Oct 2007 based on the cheques PNSB received for the total amount.
In 2008, four cheques by PNSB amounting to RM8 million were prepared and signed to the same individual. However, three of the four cheques were cancelled, and only one cheque for RM2 million was released into the individual’s account.
During the period when PNSB bought the additional seven units (on top of the five approved) and disposed of them to the individual, there was no board of directors meeting, nor was any directors’ circular resolution on the transactions issued.
Neither were there any board minutes or circular on the issuance and cancellation of the three out of four cheques prepared for the individual.
Khalid’s office noted that the property purchases were made under Khir’s name, in line with Saudi requirements that such transactions must be made in the name of Muslim individuals.
Records of a board of directors’ meeting in December 2007 showed that Khir disclosed that the properties were in his name, and that he gave an assurance that he would not make any claim over them. However, there was no mention of the exact number of units held by him.
PNSB is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Selangor government.
Khalid has vowed to investigate the matter and to take action if any crime was committed.
This revelation follows PNSB’s board of directors’ order to two of its top officials to go on a month’s paid leave pending investigations into weaknesses and irregularities in PNSB’s financial accounts.
These irregularities involve records submitted to the Inland Revenue Board, and also property purchases in Mecca from 2006 to 2007.
The two officials asked to go on leave are chief executive Datin Khairiyah Abu Hassan and finance manager Nora Azmin Radzuan.