Who says Malay-Muslims are dirt poor? Those who think so should get their head examined. The ethnic Malays should celebrate because at least 200 of their Muslim brothers (and sisters) are actually billionaires. In fact, Malaysia should be ranked third, behind the United States (680 billionaires) and China (338) but ahead of Germany (152), on the list of countries with the most billionaires.
The problem is this – those 200 billionaires cannot disclose their wealth because they got it by plundering, looting and stealing peoples’ money. Yes, they are mostly politicians from the previous Barisan Nasional government. Such conclusion is arrived when the mother of the late Jamaluddin Jarjis filed for “faraid (wealth distribution)” certificate at the Syariah court over his RM2.082 billion estate.
Jamaluddin Jarjis, popularly known as JJ, who died in a helicopter crash in 2015, was a very close friend of former Prime Minister Najib Razak. Sure, we should not bitch about dead people. But hey, we didn’t start it. It was his 85-year-old mother who has actually opened a can of worms that has gotten millions of tongues wagging on social media.
Besides, just because JJ was dead doesn’t mean his extraordinary wealth cannot be questioned. If a man’s ill-gotten fortune is automatically made legitimate after he died, then drug lord Pablo Escobar, gangster Al-Capone and dictator Ferdinand Marcos’s dirty money should become legitimate overnight and belonged to their family members after their death.
The fact that JJ’s mother, Aminah Abdullah, is forced to go to court to get her fair share of wealth speaks volumes that there is probably family feud going on for the RM2.1 billion estate. Under the Shariah Law, the mother gets one-sixth of the estate’s assets, the wife gets one-eighth and the remainder is shared among the children.
The assets in dispute include 22 landed properties in Pahang and Kuala Lumpur, 21 bank accounts with a total of more than RM15 million, several properties in the United States and Mecca, as well as a company he owned. Aminah is questioning how her son could have allegedly given some of the property, which includes 19 companies, to his four children.
One-sixth of RM2.1 billion is worth a staggering RM350 million. That’s a truckload of money for Mr. Jamaluddin’s mother. But the jaw-dropping question here isn’t about wheelchair-bound Aminah claiming her share of the inheritance. The flabbergasted question everyone is wondering is how Jamaluddin Jarjis could accumulate such a massive fortune.
As former Rompin Member of Parliament from 1990 until his death, JJ was one of 191 UMNO warlords who get to decide the prime minister of the country. He was Second Minister of Finance (2002-2004), Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (2004), Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation (2004-2008) and Ambassador to the U.S. (2009-2012).
While it’s not nice to badmouth a dead man, its worth to note that like his buddy Najib Razak, Jamaluddin Jarjis wasn’t a saint when come to pretty girls. We’re talking about a minister – Jamaluddin Jarjis – who was allegedly to have molested a female worker in the Havana Club at a five-star hotel – Hotel Meridien – in Kuala Lumpur back in April 2008.
Amazingly, barely hours after the incident, the victim whose buttock was grabbed withdrew her statutory complaint against JJ, with rumours that she was paid millions to keep her mouth shut. The case was never heard again. To save his close buddy from potential trouble, Prime Minister Najib posted JJ to America as Malaysia’s Ambassador.
Jamaluddin Jarjis was also somehow involved in the 1MDB scandal when it was exposed in 2016 that Goldman Sachs hired Anis Jamaludin, daughter of Jamaluddin Jarjis, as far back as 2010. Ms Anis worked for Goldman as an investment banking analyst in Singapore from July to November 2010. Tim Leissner, then Goldman’s co-president for Southeast Asia, was working to forge closer business ties in Malaysia.
It is believed that the idea of 1Malaysia Peoples’ Housing Scheme (PR1MA) was mooted by JJ. Last year, the then-PM Najib Razak revealed that the PR1MA Malaysia had awarded more than RM15 billion worth of contracts to 574 Bumiputera firms. Overall, PR1MA had awarded more than RM22.4 billion worth of contracts to its business partners – comprising developers, contractors as well as vendors.
Yet, despite Najib’s promise to build hundreds of thousands of the affordable housing for the people – every year – the fact remains only 11,944 units of PR1MA homes have been sold by November, 2017, as admitted by former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Shahidan Kassim. Interestingly, JJ was actually the Chairman of 1Malaysia Peoples’ Housing Scheme (PR1MA).
Had he benefited from the scheme through kickbacks during the process of awarding the contracts, hence, resulting in under delivery of housing for the people? PR1MA is clearly a cash cow where the chairman could easily enrich himself. JJ had only served the Cabinet as minister for a short period from 2002 to 2008 and he was already worth a mind-boggling RM2.1 billion.
Therefore, it’s not an exaggeration to estimate that the newly crowned UMNO President Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is worth conservatively RM20 billion. As the former Deputy Prime Minister, not to mention his past important portfolio in Defence Ministry and Home Ministry, there’s little doubt that Mr. Zahid possesses 10 times more wealth than JJ. Not bad for a Malay who spoke very little English.
Two years ago, Mr. Zahid courted controversial when his plan to import 1.5 million Bangladesh workers into the country was exposed. Using his brother Abdul Hakim Hamidi as his proxy, each cheap labour would be charged RM3,000 – potentially generating a cool revenue of RM4.5 billion for the Hamidi family. The project was believed to have proceeded secretly.
Heck, it’s safe to presume all the 191 UMNO warlords have reached the billion ringgit milestone in their capacity as division chiefs who determine the fate of the UMNO president. All the 191 UMNO warlords have their own pet projects to enrich themselves. That was how the Malaysian prime minister, by virtue of being UMNO president, kept his power.
For example, Haris Onn Hussein, the brother of former Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein Onn has a 20.16% stake in Ekovest, a company awarded the contract to build the Setiawangsa-Pantai Expressway (SPE) at a cost of RM3.738 billion with a concession period with the Government for 53½ years. That’s a cash cow the Hussein family can milk for half a century.
Even a Tier-3 UMNO warlords such as Tajuddin Abdul Rahman – nicknamed “Six Million Dollar Man” for his role in offering bribe to the tune of RM6 million for his UMNO division chief post – was already a billionaire years ago. This is the same Tajuddin who screamed until foaming at the mouth warning the Malay-Muslims about “Christianity, Chinese and Communist”.
Amusingly, his own “Ali Baba” company – Detik Utuh Sdn Bhd – was a partner with Chinese-based Crest Builder Holdings Bhd in a 49:51 equity participation involved in building Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) Tapah campus in Perak in 2013. Crest Builder had put the university’s construction cost at RM285.89 million.
While the construction cost was nothing to shout about, Mr. Tajuddin was given a cool 23-year concession to setup and maintain the campus, at a staggering RM1.3 billion. Essentially, Tajuddin’s Detik Utuh, an inactive construction company with no prior performance record in the industry, has been milking RM56.5 million every year for maintaining “new buildings”.
Like UMNO’s 191 division chiefs, their comrades from the 191 MCA division chiefs were believed to have done quite well too. For example, MCA Deputy President Wee Ka Siong, despite being mocked and laughed off as “Cry Baby Wee”, became an instant billionaire through his pet project – the RM12 billion PKFZ scandal – first hatched in 2001.
According to Forbes, there are 17 Malaysian billionaires in terms of US dollar in net worth. There are more if the fortune is measured in Malaysian Ringgit. Adding these 17 Malaysian business owners to the 191 UMNO warlords and voila, you have more than 200 billionaires. And we have not even talked about family members of politicians who become billionaire due to nepotism or using crooked means.
Nazifuddin, second son of ex-premier Najib Razak is a jolly good case study. Mr. Nazifuddin was linked to a Get-Rich-Ponzi-Scheme called UFUN. In 2015, all hell broke loose when the uFun Store had allegedly swindled 120,000 people involving at least 38 billion Baht (US$1.13 billion, £720 million, RM4 billion) in Thailand.
Now, will it be an exaggeration to suggest that Najib’s net worth is at least RM100 billion? In the same breath, those who believe that the ethnic Chinese were rich because they have robbed the Malays should think again. At least, they should be proud UMNO has produced 191 Malay billionaires, more than the Chinese. Jamaluddin Jarjis is the clearest proof!!
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