SINGAPORE (June 12): Anwar Ibrahim, the de facto leader of Pakatan Harapan (PH), says that the new administration will be investigating all of the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) government’s “dubious” investments.
This includes the multi-billion ringgit Battersea Power Station project, a deal made by Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB) and the Employees Provident Fund (EPF).
The project involves the rejuvenation of a 42-acre industrial building located at the banks of the River Thames into homes, offices and shops by a consortium of three Malaysian entities – Sime Darby Property, S P Setia and EPF.
The rejuvenation plan, which is due to be completed in 2028, involves the development of 4,000 homes and commercial buildings.
In a visit to London, Anwar told The Guardian, “All these deals which are considered dubious, including investments in housing in London, will have to be investigated.”
“Yes, that includes Battersea. Because they were made using state funds. We have to be convinced that this was the right investment decision and that there was no political influence or direction (within Malaysia).”
“It is clearly a political decision to invest. If there is something wrong then we will want to re-negotiate. We are looking at umpteen deals extending to hundreds of billions of ringgit – that is tens of billions of dollars.”
"You have to look at every deal from housing in London to railways built by China. It’s baffling to me and I was monitoring the policies of [the former prime minister Datuk Seri] Najib [Razak] and attacking him ferociously. But even I am shocked to the extent he seems to have gone to earn more to cover up the 1MDB fiasco.”
Najib has denied any wrongdoing.
According to the proposal, Phase 2 of the project was to be sold – the building itself – but not the surrounding land, which is also being redeveloped.
Meanwhile, PNB and EPF has said that the move was purely an investment consideration. Both the parties already own about 70% of the project through their direct stakes and holdings in the developers involved in the project.
The Guardian also reported that Anwar also questioned the British government's commitment to fighting corruption as he criticised their lack of investigation into the 1MDB fiasco that ran through London.