Putrajaya Distributes 1MDB Booklets In Local Universities To Answer Your Burning Questions

The booklets have been circulating since last Sunday, 21 February.

Cover image via The Malaysian Insider

The federal government's propaganda unit a.k.a the Special Affairs Department (JASA) is said to have begun distributing a booklet on 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) in local universities to boost the firm's tarnished image

According to JASA representative Datuk Lokman Adam, the booklets will attempt to provide students with a clearer picture of the controversial 1MDB, the brainchild of Prime Minister Najib Razak, in addition to countering allegations against its ventures.

Speaking to The Malaysian Insider, a spokesperson from 1MDB's media team said that information in the booklets, complete with easy-to-understand infographics, will answer questions from the public and the opposition in regards to clearing up doubts the firm.

In addition, JASA explained that 1MDB's RM42 billion debt is currently being paid off through a rationalisation exercise that includes selling land and other assets, adding that the firm has issued over 90 statements to answer various allegations against it last year.

Titled '1MDB: Siapa Kata Tidak Dijawab?' (1MDB: Who Says There Are No Answers?), the 79-page booklet will be distributed to all higher education institutions nationwide, with focused efforts on private universities as JASA believes it is easier for the student to get "outside information"

"All universities are involved, we will not make an exception on this and we will focus efforts in private universities as we realise it is easier for them to get outside information," Lokman told The Malaysian Insider, adding that JASA had visited 20 universities in November and December 2015 to hold talks about 1MDB.

He also mentioned that the distribution of the booklets is a follow-up to the department's 'Jelajah Kampus' roadshow, adding that the department decided to distribute the booklets after receiving numerous complaints from university students about the lack of answers and explanations on the 1MDB controversy.

The booklet also addresses the accusations levelled by former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad against 1MDB, including denying that the company had squandered away the people's money

Image via Bloomberg

"Dr Mahathir makes allegations based on assumptions without referring to documents and actual financial statements," states an excerpt from the booklet with infographics on its finances, alleging that Dr. M is "twisting" his statements to suit his agenda against Najib.

University Malaya (UM) has been distributing the booklets through its student affairs department since last Sunday, 21 February. In support, the university's vice-chancellor said that the university felt that the government-issued booklet could be a good reference for students.

"Lately, there have been many reports and facts released by various parties on 1MDB. Giving out the books is suitable for students to gain an accurate explanation from official government sources," said UM vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Amin Jalaludin in an emailed response to The Malaysian Insider.

Meanwhile, a DAP Youth member alleged that the booklets are being distributed in an attempt to brainwash students with the government's propaganda materials

Image via Twitter

“We suspect that the student affairs divisions of other public universities have plans to distribute the propaganda material by JASA too after this. The student affairs division should be reminded that public universities are learning sites for students, not the government’s brainwashing centre,” said Dapsy Varsity Affairs Bureau Director Leong Yu Sheng.

Dapsy also said there was a need to review the University & University Colleges Act (UUCA) that granted enormous power to the student affairs division.

Yesterday, 24 February, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) banned The Malaysian Insider on its 8th birthday:

But the news portal quickly got back online with a new URL:

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