KUALA LUMPUR: Former chief executive officer (CEO) of Yayasan Rakyat 1Malaysia (YR1M) Ung Su Ling told the High Court here today that 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Petronas and Genting Group were the funders of YR1M, which was set up in January 2013.
Ung, 51, the 49th prosecution witness, said this when cross-examined by Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah on the 38th day of the former prime minister’s trial in relation to the misappropriation of RM42 million of SRC International Sdn Bhd’s funds.
Muhammad Shafee: You were the first CEO of YR1M, right? She replied, “Yes”.
Muhammad Shafee: Who were the funders of YR1M? Ung replied, “1MDB, Genting Group and Petronas.”
When asked how much these three entities had contributed to YR1M, Ung said 1MDB had contributed RM210 million, Genting Group, RM230 million; and Petronas, RM3 million.
She explained that YR1M was established with three main cores, namely raising the quality of life of the unfortunate, improving the education standard of students from rural areas and instilling positive values in youth through their participation in sports.
“The YR1M programme was inspired by Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak who wanted to see more community activities executed based on the principles of 1Malaysia programmes,” she said, adding that Najib was one of the directors of YR1M.
Reading out her witness statement, Ung said YR1M had three accounts for financing its operations and projects, and the source of funding for one of these accounts was gambling revenue from the Genting Group.
The funding for the other two accounts was from other sources, she said.
When asked whether she had worked at the Wynton Private Equity Group which was owned by fugitive businessman Jho Low between 2004 and 2006, the witness said “yes”.
Muhammad Shafee: What was your position in Wynton?
Ung: There was no real position, maybe an executive. I also helped set up the office, to oversee the renovation as it was a startup.
Muhammad Shafee: Don’t be startled; I just need to ask this, the Wynton, is it not connected to Jho Low?
Ung: Yes it is
Muhammad Shafee: How is he connected?
Ung: I would describe him as the principal.
Muhammad Shafee: So, basically he owned the company?
Ung replied: Yes
When explaining in detail the Corporate Social Responsibility programmes carried out by the foundation, Ung said YR1M launched some 1,500 programmes to help Malaysians between 2013 and 2018.
At this point, ad hoc prosecutor Datuk V. Sithambaram raised his objection by saying that the questions asked by Muhammad Shafee were irrelevant with the charges faced by the accused.
However, Muhammad Shafee countered that he needs to disprove all these matters for bona fide reasons.
Muhammad Shafee had questioned Ung over the use of YR1M funds to help rural communities in Sarawak to set up basic water access and other amenities.
After hearing arguments by both parties, Justice Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali asked the defence not to enquire too much about the background as not all information was important for the case.
Najib, 66, is facing three counts of criminal breach of trust, one count of abusing his position and three counts of money laundering involving SRC International funds amounting to RM42 million.
The hearing before Justice Mohd Nazlan continues tomorrow.