Jana Wibawa: Latest arrests involve relatives who ‘scammed’ politician’s son

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MACC’s investigation into the Jana Wibawa programme has uncovered a tangled web allegedly involving the family members of a top politician.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a high-ranking MACC official claimed that a couple had allegedly scammed their relatives into parting with RM400,000 in bribes.

The alleged scam came to light when the MACC launched an investigation into a Jana Wibawa contractor suspected of obtaining a project through purported connections with a prominent politician.

The official told Malaysiakini the MACC was informed that the politician’s son was also allegedly involved.

Upon learning that the politician’s son was on the commission’s radar, sources alleged that the couple (Suspects 1 and 2) devised a plan with three others to solicit bribes from the man, claiming that they could prevent his arrest.

One of their accomplices is a MACC officer (Suspect 3), who had been part of the graft buster’s operations into Jana Wibawa but was not in a position to determine the direction of the probe.

“Suspect 1 met the politician’s son and claimed that an arrangement could be made so he would not be arrested.

“The politician’s son then reportedly went to his brother-in-law, another businessperson who is also the elder brother of Suspect 2, seeking assistance.

“It was the brother-in-law (brother of Suspect 2) who forked out the RM400,000 to help pay the bribe,” claimed the official.

According to him, the RM400,000 was allegedly paid on March 6.

Following a tip-off, the official said an operation was launched to detain the suspects and some of the money was recovered when a team raided several premises.

On March 9, the MACC detained four suspects, including its officer who collaborated with them.

Mastermind suspect

The fifth suspect whom the MACC believed was the mastermind had managed to evade arrest.

Malaysiakini learned that he has since contacted the MACC through a lawyer, stating his intention to surrender.

The official claimed the suspects had attempted to capitalise on the situation to squeeze money from the politician’s son.

“The MACC officer involved was not even in charge of the investigation. He was only involved in one of the operations,” he added.

Malaysiakini is withholding the names of the suspects as they have yet to be charged in court.

Yesterday, MACC chief Azam Baki confirmed the commission arrested four people, including one of its own officers, for allegedly soliciting and taking bribes related to an investigation into Jana Wibawa.

Jana Wibawa, or Program Jana Ekonomi Pemerkasaan Kontraktor Bumiputera (Bumiputera Contractor Empowerment Economic Generation Programme), was introduced in November 2020 during former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s administration.

It was a stimulus project aimed at empowering bumiputera contractors as part of the Covid-19 pandemic relief efforts. – Malaysiakini