No Rogue Bankers, Only A Rogue PM – How Jho Low Kept Banking Money So That Najib Can Keep Spending Cash

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Jul 24 2019
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The gay sex video of Azmin Ali has been a great distraction that for a while, everybody has forgotten about the trial of Najib Razak, who is currently facing 7 charges of criminal breach of trust (CBT), money laundering and abuse of power over RM42 million of funds from SRC International, a former subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).


And for some weird reasons, the corruption trial at the High Court today has been postponed to tomorrow (July 25) after two of Najib’s defence lawyers mysteriously fell sick. Strangely, despite a strong battalion of top lawyers, there’s no reserve lawyer from the defence team who could take over – including legal eagles like Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin and Mohd Yusof Zainal Abidin.


In actuality, the trial has entered a very interesting chapter. Joanna Yu Ging Ping, Najib Razak’s relationship liaison manager at Ambank, has revealed more damaging evidence against the former prime minister. The defence team’s initial plan was to establish that Jho Low (full name: Low Taek Jho) and Joanna Yu were the culprits – conspiring against their client, Najib Razak.

Joanna Yu Ging Ping - Najib Razak's Ambank Relationship Manager

At the early of the trial in April, Najib’s hotshot attorney Shafee Abdullah declares – “My client does not deal with his account himself. He was misled and is a victim”. Najib’s lawyers were supposed to prove that Joanna Yu, the 54th prosecution witness, was one of the “rogue bankers” who conspired with Jho Low in meddling with the former premier’s bank accounts without his knowledge.


But as the trial progresses, it was Najib Razak who turned out to be the “rogue prime minister”, not 48-year-old Joanna Yu. A message from Najib to Jho Low proves that the former PM knew and was in absolute control of his bank accounts. The message reads – “My platinum cards are not going through Jho. Can you call AmBank Visa and Mastercard right away? Thanks.”


The chat message using BlackBerry was forwarded immediately to Joanna Yu for her prompt action. Apparently, Jho Low, the fugitive and mastermind of the 1MDB scandal, received the message from then-PM Najib after the Malaysian leader’s credit cards were declined in a Chanel store in Hawaii, as he attempted to swipe his credit card for a US$100,000 purchase in the store on Dec 23, 2014.

Najib SRC Corruption Trial - BlackBerry Conversation - Jho Low and Joanna Yu

Najib Razak Golfs With Barack Obama - Rosmah Shopping Chanel - Hawaii

It was the same time Najib jetted to Honolulu, Hawaii in December 2014 with his spendthrift wife, Rosmah Mansor, where he happily golfed with US President Barack Obama, who was on vacation on the same Hawaiian island on Christmas Eve. Najib was forced to cut short his trip after he was condemned for holidaying while the country’s worst flooding in decades forced more than 100,000 people to flee.


Even then, Najib took a commercial flight to Hong Kong, where he was fetched by the Royal Malaysian Air Force. The country’s official jet was at the mercy of Rosmah who, despite the crisis at home, had refused to go back but instead decided to fly from Hawaii and made a long shopping detour in Los Angeles, Indianapolis, New York, London, Dubai and Bangkok before returning to Kuala Lumpur.


Joanna Yu testified that upon getting the message from Jho Low, she immediately tried to sort out the problem, confirming that “MNR” in the forwarded message referred to “Mohd Najib Razak”. The full transcript of the conversation between her and Jho Low shows that the premier was in charge the entire time – “chasing” Mr. Low to get the issue solved immediately.

Jho Low and Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil - 1MDB and SRC Scandal

The fact that Jho Low had repeatedly asked Joanna Yu for assurance that the US$100,000 transaction will go through suggests that Mr. Low was Mr. Najib’s personal problem-fixer, as far as money was concerned. And it certainly does not look like Joanna Yu, now jobless, was in cahoots with Jho Low, based on the BlackBerry conversation she had with the Najib’s partner-in-crime.


When news broke of the RM42 million flowing through Najib’s accounts back in 2015, leading to Ambank being fined RM53.7 million by Bank Negara Malaysia (Central Bank) for non-compliance, Joanna Yu and her colleague, Daniel Lee, were fired in the same year. Together with another relationship manager, Krystal Yap, the trio has all left the bank.


It’s not hard to see how Miss Yu, being the most senior amongst her team of relationship managers, was made the scapegoat and told to leave the bank, where she had worked for 20 years from 1995 to 2015. If indeed Joanna was a rogue banker as suggested by Najib’s disgraced lawyers, surely the defence team can find proof that the banker had been “compensated” by Jho Low, can they not?

1MDB Scandal - Money Trail From SRC Into Ex-PM Najib Razak Accounts - April 30, 2019

Joanna also revealed that Jho Low had requested for Najib Razak’s bank accounts to be identified by a code name for confidentiality reasons. The “AmPrivate Banking-MR” – used for Najib’s current account was the first ever individual account to have been designated with a code name. Why would Mr. Low go the extra miles to protect his boss’ identity if he was trying to scam Najib?


The trial saw nothing but a relationship manager (Joanna Yu) who obediently took instructions from former SRC International Sdn Bhd chief executive officer and managing director Nik Faisal Ariff Kamil, who is the mandate holder of Najib Razak’s accounts with the bank. Only when Nik Faisal was unavailable or unreachable would Joanna Yu contact Jho Low.


Regardless how the Ambank relationship manager was contacted, Nik Faisal must give his instructions regarding Najib’s accounts via email before Joanna can act upon such instructions. In April, R. Uma Devi, AmBank’s Jalan Raja Chulan branch manager, told the court that all transactions involving money going into and out of Najib’s accounts were based on his instructions and mandate.

Uma Devi - AmBank Jalan Raja Chulan Branch Manager

Miss Uma said Ambank had never received any complaints whatsoever from Najib about how his accounts were being managed by the bank. As the account holder, Najib was supposed to get back to the bank within 14 days if there’s any errors, discrepancies, irregularities, unauthorised withdrawals/debits, fraudulent transactions/entries made.


Mr. Najib was also supposed to take action against the bank for any wrongful or unauthorised transaction or error committed. However, the former premier had done none of those, suggesting he was happy with all the transactions, until today. Joanna confirmed – again – that Najib had never complained to the bank over the millions of Ringgit being transferred into his accounts.


Nik Faisal cannot take money out of Najib’s account because the former prime minister is the sole signatory to issue cheques from his own current accounts. Najib gave mandate to Nik Faisal, who in turn gave his mandate to Joanna Yu to contact Jho Low. From the BlackBerry conversation, Najib had even ordered Jho Low to contact Ambank directly to fix his credit card problems.

Jho Low, Prince Turki, Najib Razak, Rosmah Mansor - Yacht

Joanna Yu first met Jho Low in 2008 and started handling the 1MDB account from 2010. Managing such a high profile account might look like a privilege to some bank relationship managers, but to Miss Yu, it was a nightmare. That’s because Najib’s current accounts were always overdrawn due to excessive issuance of cheques amounting to millions of Ringgit without sufficient funds.


She told the court – “I often had to chase Nik Faisal to bank in money to prevent the cheques from bouncing.” Unlike incompetent and inefficient Nik Faisal, Joanna revealed that Jho Low always managed to sort out the insufficient funds problem by getting “someone” to bank in the money over the counter to make up for the shortfall in Najib’s accounts.


As revealed by the Ambank relationship manager, a total of RM12.3 million cash was deposited over the counter between June 2014 and March 2015 to ensure that cheques issued by then-PM Najib Razak did not bounce. Since when do you see a scammer would actively make sure the victim’s bank accounts have enough cash to prevent cheques from being bounced?

Najib SRC Corruption Trial - BlackBerry Conversation - Jho Low and Joanna Yu - 2

It doesn’t take Einstein to tell how Jho Low kept banking cash so that the crooked Najib Razak can keep spending the money. And the poor Joanna lost her job for fire fighting Najib’s overspending behaviour so much so that such problematic transactions had to be reported to Bank Negara. Obviously, there were no rogue bankers, only a rogue prime minister who had spent stolen money.


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