National Service – Genting Buys Equanimity For $126 Million, Jho Low’s Effort To Scoop Back His Toy Cheaply Fails

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Apr 03 2019
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Not many people like buying stolen goods, let alone one as huge as Equanimity, the superyacht once belonged to Jho Low (full name: Low Taek Jho). Although the luxury boat was not physically stolen, it was bought by Mr. Low for an eye-popping US$250 million (RM1 billion) using money stolen from 1MDB (1Malaysia Development Berhad).


Jho Low, the infamous partner-in-crime of former Prime Minister Najib Razak, was incredibly furious after his favourite toy – The Equanimity – was handed over to the new Government of Malaysia by Indonesia without much challenge. The fugitive has been complaining that his yacht was illegitimately seized by the Mahathir government from Indonesia last August.


Prior to the sale of the yacht announced today, Jho Low has been foaming at the mouth for months, accusing the Malaysian Government of being responsible for substantially eroding the yacht’s value, leading to its failure to be sold in the first round of auctions. As part of the US-Department of Justice’s investigation, the yacht was seized in Bali, Indonesia, in Feb 2018.

Jho Low Equanimity Yacht Confiscated - Jho Low and Najib Razak - FBI DOJ

Today, Attorney General Tommy Thomas announced that the Equanimity has finally been sold to casino operator Genting Malaysia Bhd for US$126 million (RM514 million). Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the luxury yacht was sold to the highest bidder. That was indeed a splendid news after The Star reported that the government could drop the price to as low as US$80 million.


According to sources, bidders refused to pay more than US$100 million for the controversial yacht. That would be lower than the minimum bid price of US$130 million desired by the Malaysian government as reported in December, a price based on a valuation made by the United Kingdom-based independent appraiser Winterbothams.


As the second phase of bidding neared the March 31 deadline, the government was obviously desperate to get rid of the giant liability. As disclosed by the Ministry of Finance, taxpayers’ money to the tune of RM14.2 million was splashed to maintain the luxury boat for the last eight months – averaging RM1.77 million every month.

The Equanimity Super Yacht - Rear View

Like “car depreciation”, a yacht, especially one as scandalous as Equanimity, depreciates tremendously fast. Hence, foreign potential buyers knew the government wants to dispose of the vessel as soon as possible due to its high maintenance cost. Every single day the yacht stays docked in Langkawi, Kedah, the cheaper it would become for buyers.


Heck, there were even rumours that Jho Low deliberately badmouthed the government, including spreading fake news that the yacht was not properly taken care of, because he was hoping to scoop back his toy as cheap as possible through proxy. As expected, the billionaire fugitive wasted no time condemning the Malaysian government after the sale today.


Jho Low’s spokesman, Benjamin Haslem, Co-CEO of Wells Haslem Mayhew Strategic Public Affairs, said that the “below market price sale” of the yacht was due to the ineptitude of the Mahathir administration. He also claimed that if the yacht was not illegally seized from Indonesia and docked in a hazardous environment at Port Klang, it would have maintained its value and avoided a fire sale.

Najib Razak and Jho Low

Mr. Low’s spin doctor said – “It took the Mahathir Government twice as long as they promised to sell the yacht, the auction flopped and the ‘transparent’ sales process the Mahathir Government committed to at the outset has been subject to multiple abrupt changes – largely forced on the Government through their own incompetence.”


The attacks included a personal insult at the government for losing its recent by-elections. Haslem said – “No wonder recent by-election results demonstrate a growing concern from the Malaysian people. As we have stated from the beginning, this is a failed PR stunt, which arrogantly ignored court rulings in Indonesia as well as established legal proceedings in the US.”


As amusing as it may sound, the simple fact that Jho Low pays top dollars for propagandist or PR specialist to constantly attack the government on the issue of the Equanimity since August last year speaks volumes about how much he actually loves his yacht, which he had used since 2014 before being seized by the Indonesian authorities in collaboration with FBI and US-DoJ.

Jho Low - Money Dropping - TheEdge Siphoning USD700 Million

Believed to be still hiding in China, Jho Low has since lost the ability to live a free life sailing around the world in the international water with the Equanimity, which is equipped with Jacuzzi (on deck), sauna, helicopter landing pad, swimming pool, movie theatre, beach club, beauty salon and whatnot. That explains his frustration at the confiscation of the yacht, but not his private jet – Bombardier Global 5000.


However, exactly why Genting burned half a billion Ringgit on a depreciating yacht like Equanimity? Confirming the purchase, the casino operator said the acquisition would allow it to differentiate itself from its competitors and provide the company with a unique and competitive edge for its premium customers’ business. Seriously?


Any Tom, Dick and his hamster can tell that it doesn’t make any business sense spending US$126 million (RM514 million) on a yacht that could only accommodate 26 guests. It’s difficult to get back it’s ROI. The closest Genting has associated itself with ships was in the business of luxury cruise line – Star Cruises – operating in the Asia-Pacific market and based in Hong Kong.

Genting Berhad Buys Equanimity Yacht - Lim Kok Thay

Genting Malaysia, which is involved in gaming, hotel and resort-related operations, has no compelling justification to buy the super luxury and super expensive yacht. Hence, the only explanation Genting’s boss Lim Kok Thay, the son of Genting Highlands founder Lim Goh Tong, bought the Equanimity has everything to do with “National Service”.


In the event the vessel cannot be sold after second round of bidding, Jho Low would have the right to gloat. Mahathir government will be humiliated. Curiously, Genting was willing to pay a hefty premium for the yacht, when other buyers would not touch it with a 10-foot pole unless at below US$100 million. It wasn’t a coincidence that Genting’s offer price was very close to the government’s desired US$130 million.


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You tolong me, I tolong you…

Does anyone really know where Jho is?

If it is “China”, where’s the proof?

Is it only Malaysian magical thinking, sit under a coconut tree and “wisdom” falls from the sky?

And whether they know or not know where Jho is, how can they know how Jho is thinking (or not)?

For all we know (or don’t) Fat Jho may be laughing like crazy those who want to grab him make huge asses of themselves losing millions every month over the (actually illegally) seized yacht, and then finally does an unbelievable “sale”.

For all we know (and mostly don’t!) Fat Jho may even outwit our clowns, wins in court, asks for “his” yacht back, the way we can only manage cockups and nothing else!

But look at it this way, if Jho is the criminal Malaysia says he is, why does Malaysia need to “negotiate” anything with him?

If no one including Malaysian psychics and bomohs and fengshui singsehs can put the finger on where the fat guy is – or is actually hearing his voice in their heads, then, regardless of how we all itch to hang him, we should wait for the fat guy to be arrested, charged, and appear in court.

We all know Malaysians are barely civilised about just about everything, but we can at least pretend not to be psychics, bomohs, fengshui singsehs, astrologers, fortune-tellers, kok-tokkers, etc etc., allow for verifiable information to be had, due process, and a civilised and honest trial – what is it we want, a kampong circus?!

Right now, where’s all the proof of Jho’s whereabouts, what has really been done (show that) about having him arrested?

Is Malaysia trying to hint China is “hiding” Jho? And, wtf benefit is China getting having anything to do with the yellow-skin imitation angmoh?

If China is indeed “hiding” Jho, then why is Malaysia such a pussy about demanding China hand him over? Some of us were very brave about cancelling the east coast rail project, even called China “colonialist”, how come our big guys are such cowards about asking China to hand over a Malaysian?

For all the thumping of the hollow chest, ceaseless bitchin’ about Jho et al, it is more interesting to know why the saviours of our country can do nothing about actually grabbing the big fella Jho, than to actually see him grabbed, tried, and even grilled in an oven.

Is it because other than ceaselessly bitchin’, New Baru Malaysia is as useless as Old Baru Malaysia, when it comes to bringing back fugitives?

It is really suspicious why up to now, Jho cannot be located, and cannot be arrested. No one can really hide anywhere these days, and a creature as large as a “whale” has to surface and breathe a good part of his great life.

There are more ways to get hold of Jho that hanging around and scratching the testicles about doing nothing, we can even hire a couple of bounty hunters, just one would be more useful than half of Malaysia’s population.

Is it because New Baru Malaysia actually doesn’t want to arrest Jho?

It may be better to use the at guy as a scapegoat endlessly as an excuse and blame for everything, than to have him around, possibly ably defending himself, and, outwit our stupid politicians!

Whatever it may be that Jho is not produced in a court, we either do genuine big effort to finally grab him, than to endlessly bitch about him to show New Baru Malaysia is as hopelessly freakin’ useless as Old Baru Malaysia.

What say, give the job of grabbing Fat Jho to Josef StaLim and Tony Pua, they can out-talk anybody, the Chinese (if they have Jho) can get rid of Jho fast, just to escape from listening to the noisy coolies…

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