The High Court today heard that Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had casually asked for a RM10 million donation from a Singaporean businessman during a dinner event in 2015.
Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigating officer Christ Sheldon Anak Merun, 32, said Zahid wanted the money for his charity foundation Yayasan Akalbudi.
He said this under examination in chief conducted by deputy public prosecutor Harris Ong Mohd Jeffery Ong.
The 98th prosecution witness in Zahid’s trial said the businessman, Wong Sang Woo @ Wong Shuh Chain, had revealed that the Umno president made the request during a dinner immediately after they first met.
“Wong said Zahid had asked him about making a donation to the poor and those in need. As a generous man, Wong agreed to make a donation to Yayasan Akalbudi, a foundation founded by Zahid.
“Before the event ended, Zahid mentioned the amount of RM10 million to Wong and the latter told Zahid that he will think about it as he needed time to come up with such an amount,” Christ Sheldon said.
He was testifying in Zahid’s trial which had entered its 51st day.
Christ Sheldon said in early 2016, Wong received a call from a person who was instructed by Zahid to ask about the RM10 million donation and explain about the charity work the foundation was carrying out.
He said the person who contacted Wong told the latter to make the payment for the donation to Messrs Lewis & Co because the law firm managed the foundation.
“Wong then arranged for the payment to be made to Lewis & Co through 10 separate cheques of RM1 million each as requested by Zahid,” he said.
The MACC officer said investigations showed Wong had resorted to borrowing money to make the RM10 million donation.
He said Wong had to borrow money from KTS Holdings Sdn Bhd through a friend of his, one Ngu Ngiong Hieng.
He said in the name of friendship, Ngu had lent the money temporarily to Wong so that he could fulfil his promise to Zahid.
He said Wong who was the director of Chia Bee Enterprise Sdn Bhd made the donation through the company to boost its profile.
“He said it was something special when the (then) deputy prime minister asked for donations from him.”.
Yesterday, another MACC officer Amirudin Nordin, 38, testified that he also recorded Wong’s statement in the investigations involving RM10 million from Chia Bee Enterprise to Yayasan Akalbudi through Lewis & Co.
The 96th prosecution witness said he, however, could not track down Wong to testify in court.
He said Immigration Department records showed that Wong is not in the country.
The trial before judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah continues.
Zahid, 68, is facing 47 charges, 12 of them for criminal breach of trust (CBT), eight for corruption and 27 for money laundering involving tens of millions of ringgit of funds from Yayasan Akalbudi. – NST