It is a good guess that the Kuching court on Monday will be a lot busier than it was a week before when Taib family lawyer (and expert on how to cheat ‘blind’ native people), Alvin Chong, first raised the family row over the sudden disposition of CMSB shares to the Governor’s second wife, Ragad.
As Sarawak Report exclusively reported Taib Mahmud’s younger son Rahman Sulaiman has called for an injunction to freeze 50 million shares from his mother’s estate that the Governor had suddenly signed over to Ragad (after considerable years of nagging according to certain quarters).
In pointing out that the actual beneficiaries of the deceased Laila Taib’s will were her husband and children, making the transfer illegal, Alvin Chong intriguingly mentioned that dealers’ screens had originally registered that the entire 111 million shares from Laila’s estate (worth over one ringgit each) had been gifted to Ragad via RHB Securities.
Later that was adjusted to suggest that only 50 million were signed over by Taib, who has sole authority to do so as the administrator of the estate.
The sudden and clearly secretive move is made all the stranger by the fact that Taib has chosen to sit on those shares for nearly 15 years following Laila’s death. Moreover, Chong was unable to detail how the will had called for the shares to be divided among the beneficiaries.
To all intents and purposes, therefore, the estate has been treated as Taib’s own asset raising considerable speculation as to what was behind the decision to favour the second wife in such a way in apparent defiance of the formal terms of his first wife’s will?
Playing into the matter is the widespread concern that Taib is no longer in sufficient control of his faculties to perform his official duties let alone manage his private affairs. In public he seemingly clings on to his wife, more a nursemaid than his equal partner.
Has Power of Attorney already been passed over is the widespread speculation or are papers simply being slipped under his nose for him to sign, in between the various official documents that the Governor must add his name to?
If neither are the case and Taib has made an executive decision to defy the official terms of his ex-wife’s will, then surely he must step up and defend his decision which has been contested by his angry children?
Meanwhile, there are several questions for official bodies and law enforcement raised by the situation which demand decisions on their part. The first one being that if the Governor is no longer in control of his private affairs why has he not stepped down as head of state?
This matter is one of grave concern for the people of Sarawak.
Second, we are talking about an awful lot of loot. The last time the MACC opened investigations into the blatant acquisition of wealth by Taib and all his family the file was rapidly closed as political forces moved into sway.
The same outsized political influence of the robber barons of Sarawak, whose million and a half voters control 31 seats in Parliament (15% of the seats controlled by roughly 7% of voters) has continued to this day, protecting them from investigation despite the blatant theft in terms of the contracts, concessions and bribes received by Taib family companies, party and various cronies.
The question is, doest this wealth, which includes the CMSB shares, of course, belong any more to Taib’s children than it does to Ragad?
Such matters have not troubled the heads of the squabbling second generation and second wife naturally. They have simply focused like their father on filling their individual pockets.
Ragad, who now drips in diamonds and expensive fashion, has been somehow siphoning unaccounted for wealth out of the country as fast as she can muster. What salary does she earn?
A recent restaurant opening in KL is merely a token, according to those in the know, as the second wife has been creating a new base away from Malaysia in Istanbul where her family property portfolio has been expanding nicely.
Now the family are squabbling over these spoils, the people of Sarawak may learn more about what exactly is being taken from the country by such methods, if only thanks to the battles in open court.
Is it not time for the people themselves to also demand their money back from the lot of them?