"RM2 Million Is Like Pocket Money For Me" — UMNO's Putrajaya MP Tengku Adnan

The 69-year-old, who has been indicted for corruption, also said that he felt "deprived" after the KL High Court denied his request to not reveal publicly that he had declared nearly a billion ringgit in assets.

Cover image via Aswadi Alia/New Straits Times

UMNO treasurer general, Tengku Adnan, who has retained the Putrajaya parliamentary seat since its inception in 2004, is currently facing a corruption charge of accepting two million ringgit in bribes

The RM2,000,000, however, is like "pocket money" for the former Federal Territories Minister, according to his own admission in the Kuala Lumpur High Court earlier today, 5 March.

According to New Straits Times, Tengu Adnan, who is also known as Ku Nan, was testifying on the third day of his defence in the High Court when deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Julia Ibrahim asked him to explain his allegation in his witness statement that the corruption charges against him were "irrelevant".

DPP Julia asked him if the RM2 million — that was given via cheque by his close associate and Aset Kayamas Sdn Bhd managing director Chai Kin Kong — was considered valuable to him.

"Was the RM2 million valuable to you?" asked DPP Julia.

Tengku Adnan replied, "No it was not. To me, it's like, my pocket money you know."

Tengu Adnan during his appearance at the KL Court Complex.

Image via Berita Harian

According to the politician, whose party came back in government under a new coalition called Perikatan Nasional, the prosecution has been trying to "tarnish his reputation" since day one of the trial

"You have been trying to damage my image since the first day of the trial. You talk to the media and make contradictory statements. This is not fair," he told DPP Julia today, as reported by Malaysiakini.

"I was a former minister in the Prime Minister's Department looking after the law… I know where you are going with your line of questions."

The UMNO leader's exchange with the DPP comes after he told the High Court on Wednesday that he felt "deprived" when he was questioned about asset declarations he made while he was a minister

During his trial yesterday, the Barisan Nasional secretary general reportedly became angry when he was questioned by the prosecution about his assets, revealed to be around RM900 million.

New Straits Times reported that Tengku Adnan became infuriated at the High Court when his attempt to not have his assets' worth revealed publicly was unsuccessful.

"When I said I did not want to declare my assets publicly, you know the reason," he said.

Now I have a problem. After I mentioned nearly a billion ringgit (worth of assets).

"...they will sensationalise it. That's why I feel deprived," he added.

High Court Judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan had rejected Tengku Adnan's application, ruling that no evidence must be kept secret from the public.

"For the trial to be conducted fairly, it must be done transparently. This way, the public will be able to appreciate any decision reached by the court and not be kept guessing because certain evidence is being kept secret," the judge said while making his decision yesterday.

Here's the worth of assets Tengku Adnan said he declared

In 2001, as the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department under Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as the fourth Prime Minister under BN, Tengku Adnan declared assets amounting to RM938,643,566.16.

In 2006, as the Tourism Minister under fifth Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, the Putrajaya MP declared that his assets amounted to RM711,325,822.

In 2013 and 2016, as the Federal Territories Minister under sixth Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, he declared that his assets amounted to RM691,770,649 and RM782,748,061 respectively.

He is one of several politicians, who are now back in the new Perikatan Nasional government, undergoing corruption trials:

Another politician is UMNO president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is currently facing a total of 87 corruption charges in two separate trials.

A former chief justice, who supports the new ruling coalition, has warned against giving Zahid a ministerial post: