The money was paid to Rahmat, nephew of Mahathir, through UKSB
SHAH ALAM – Former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad’s name and that of party Bersatu came up in court today (25 July) during the corruption trial of Ahmad Zahid Hamidi over the award of a foreign visa system (VLN) contract.
The Malay Mail reported that the Langkawi MP, who was formerly Bersatu chairman, was suggested as an indirect recipient of financial contributions given by Ultra Kirana Sdn Bhd (UKSB), a local company that has been implicated in the VLN contract award.
Under questioning from the defence, UKSB administrative manager David Tan Siong Sun told the High Court that Mahathir received RM2.6 million for political funding purposes through the latter’s nephew, Rahmat Abu Bakar.
Tan affirmed the entries he had made in a ledger he owned for bookkeeping purposes on cash payments made by UKSB to various politicians, government staff and Ahmad Zahid himself when cross-examined by defence lawyer Ahmad Zaidi Zainal.
Tan referred to Rahmat as “Kedahan” in his ledger, which was shown to the court today.
Zaidi: We start with the name Kedahan, who is he?
Tan: He is Tan Sri Rahmat. The nephew to Tun Dr Mahathir.
Zaidi: RM2.6 million made to Tan Sri Rahmat?
Tan: Yes, correct.
Zaidi: Why RM2.6 million paid to Tan Sri Rahmat?
Tan: For Dr Mahathir and Bersatu. I believe it is for a political fund.
Mahathir served as Bersatu’s chairman from the party’s founding in 2016 up to February 2020.
Zahid is facing 33 charges of receiving bribes amounting to S$13.56 million (RM42 million) from UKSB as an inducement for himself in his capacity as a civil servant and the then home minister to extend the contract of the company as the operator of the OSCs in China and the VLN system as well as to maintain the agreement to supply VLN integrated system paraphernalia to the same company by the Home Ministry.
Zahid was charged with another seven counts as the home minister who obtained S$1.15 million, RM3 million, €15,000 and US$15,000 in cash from the same company for himself in connection with his official work.
He is accused of committing all the offences at Seri Satria, Presint 16, Putrajaya, and Country Heights, Kajang, between October 2014 and March 2018.