KOTA KINABALU: Former Barisan Nasional component, Upko, has returned the RM1mil linked to the missing 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) funds.
According to Datuk Madius Tangau who is the Upko president, they returned the money about a month before the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) had announced a list of recipients said to have received the money.
The MACC has begun civil proceedings to recover about RM270mil from some 41 recipients and entities under the Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.
The monies disbursed were from former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s personal bank account.
“We did not know the source of the money. It was given to us to undertake community projects,” Tangau was quoted as saying by an online portal.
Tangau, whose Upko was part of the BN government, left the coalition to form a pact with Parti Warisan Sabah, following last year’s May 9 General Election.
The Sabah Deputy Chief Minister said that when the money came in, they found it insufficient for the planned programme.
“We decided to run the programme our own way and kept the money (RM1mil) in a fixed deposit,” he said on Friday (June 28).
The party had no problem in deciding to return the funds to the government, he added.
Questions on why MACC did not take action against Upko were raised by other political parties as MACC pushed to recover from two other former Sabah Barisan components – Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) led by Tan Sri Joseph Kurup (RM1mil) and Liberal Democratic Party (RM509,560) as well as Sabah Umno (RM1.25mil).