KUALA LUMPUR – Bersatu’s information chief Wan Saiful Wan Jan was charged in Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court today (Feb 21) for soliciting bribes relating to the Jana Wibawa programme.
The Tasek Gelugor MP was slapped with two corruption charges.
For the first charge, he was accused of soliciting a bribe of RM232 million from one Lian Tan Chuan, as an incentive to help Nepturis Sdn. Bhd to obtain the Central Spine Road project from the government in April 2022 at the Royal Lake Club, Taman Tasik Perdana, here.
Wan Saiful was also accused of accepting RM6,962,694.54 in bribes credited to WSA Advisory Group Sdn Bhd CIMB bank account between July 8 and September 30, 2022.
WSA Advisory Group Sdn Bhd belongs to Wan Saiful.
He claimed trial for both charges before Judge Azura Alwi
Both charges were framed under Section 16(a)(a) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 and punishable under Section 24 of the same act, which carries up to 20 years in jail and a fine of not less than five times the amount of the bribe or RM10,000, whichever is higher, upon conviction.
Wan Saiful was represented by Senior counsel Hisyam Teh Poh Teik and Takiyuddin Hassan while Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin, and Rasyidah Murni Azmi appeared as prosecutors
The court then imposed an RM400,000 bail and fixed March 22 for re-mention.
Wan Saiful was arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) last night along with Bersatu’s Segambut division deputy chief Adam Radlan Adam Muhammad after giving their statements to the agency on the Jana Wibawa scandal.
Adam Radlan will be charged in a separate court.
Bersatu leaders seen in court to support Wan Saiful were former Prime Minister and Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin and secretary-general Hamzah Zainuddin.
Jana Wibawa (Program Jana Ekonomi Pemerkasaan Kontraktor Bumiputera Berwibawa) was a scheme launched during the Perikatan Nasional administration under Muhyiddin.
Its objective was to improve the capacity of Bumiputera contractors in the construction industry and to expedite project execution to spur the nation’s economic recovery post-Covid-19.
The agency launched investigations after receiving reports of allegations that contractors chosen under this programme had deposited a total of RM300 million into Bersatu’s bank accounts.
MACC had since frozen the party’s bank accounts to facilitate its investigation.
Last week Muhyiddin was also summoned by MACC to record his statement regarding the Jana Wibawa scandal.
It was reported that Muhyiddin was among individuals being investigated by MACC over the scandal, but the Pagoh MP claimed that he was not a suspect.
International Trade and Industry Minister Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz, who served as finance minister under Muhyiddin, on Monday (Feb 20) also confirmed that MACC had summoned him up over Jana Wibawa.
On Feb 15, Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi announced that the government had decided to postpone RM5.7 billion worth of rural development projects under the Jana Wibawa programme.
Zahid said this move is to facilitate a review of whether they were awarded in accordance with the procurement process and governance requirements set by the Treasury. — mediahit