KUALA LUMPUR: A very angry man testified against his former boss today and he did not hold back in telling all about Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his style of leadership.
More importantly, Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah also spilled the beans on how Najib was instrumental in getting the Finance Ministry tangled up with 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) and its subsidiary companies, including SRC International Sdn Bhd.
Husni, who was Finance Minister II under Najib's administration until he quit the post in 2016, had everyone in court captivated with his insider background of what transpired in the ministry when it came to matters involving the two companies.
He related how he was reduced to being an office boy at one time, and how Najib told him off whenever he tried to enquire about 1MDB and SRC International.
The former Umno treasurer also described Najib as an autocratic leader and testified how the latter had blocked attempts to get money which had been frozen by the Swiss authorities to be brought back to Malaysia.
Husni started his much anticipated testimony by reading from a witness statement when the afternoon session of Najib's trial resumed after the lunch break at 2pm.
He was guided through his testimony by Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Muhammad Izzat Fauzan.
The 67-year old noted that he was appointed as Finance Minister II in 2009 by Najib, who, he said, was an old acquaintance.
"However, I quit on 27 June, 2016," he said, without revealing the reason, although his testimony was riddled with insinuations on his disappointment with how things were done in the government under Najib.
Husni got the ball rolling by touching on the RM2 billion loan application by SRC International from the Retirement Fund Inc (KWAP).
He revealed how he was kept in the dark about it and only came to know when Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop was signing off on a memorandum which was to be presented to the Cabinet.
"I then asked Najib why such a big amount was being given to the company and he told me it was to enable them to get involved in coal mining activities.
"I told him this was best left to the private sector but he had other ideas," he said.
Husni said RM4 billion was eventually given to SRC International and a portion of the money was used as investment in coal mining activities in Java, Indonesia, and natural resources in Mongolia.
The balance, he said, was kept in Switzerland and Hong Kong.
"No documents whatsoever were presented by SRC International when they wanted the government to become guarantors for their loan," he said, adding there was also no feasibility studies done before 1MDB was formed.
"I brought all this up with Najib but he told me off.
"He said 'I know what I am doing and I am going ahead'."
Husni said he again confronted Najib when he found out that 1MDB was going to enter into a joint venture with Petro Saudi for oil and gas exploration activities.
"I warned him that we could end up losing everything as 1MDB had no experience in this. I told him it was best we leave such activities to Petronas."
Husni said instead of listening to the advise, Najib brushed him off by saying: "From today onwards you don't get involved anymore."
Husni said he later sent a personal letter to Najib regarding 1MDB but nothing came of it.
Izzat then asked Husni about how other Minister of Finance Inc (MoF Inc) companies operated.
He explained that every single one had proper structural charts and workflow.
However, in SRC International's case, he said the chief executive officer did not even bother to turn up for meetings.
"I have met everyone from the Bank Negara Governor to the top people from Petronas, Khazanah and other companies.
"However, the CEO of SRC International refused to meet me. I was reduced to being an office boy when it came to SRC International," he said.
Husni then tried to explain how another of Najib's close aides, Indonesian billionaire Tan Sri Peter Sondakh, had tried to bulldoze a deal for the government to get a stake in the St Regis Langkawi Hotel owned by his Rajawali Group.
"I chased them away when they came to see me," he said.
However, before he could continue, Najib's lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah objected by questioning the relevancy of such information against the charges faced by his client.
Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali told the prosecution to move on.
Husni then started talking about how he saw Najib and sought permission to meet the Swiss authorities to bring back money which had been taken there by SRC International after securing the KWAP loan.
"The Swiss said this was money from money laundering activities.
"I wanted to go there and show them that this was money from the KWAP loan but Najib refused to allow it," he said.
Husni, who was described as a very angry witness by the defence, will be cross examined by Shafee on Thursday.
Najib, 66, is facing trial over the abuse of SRC International funds amounting to RM42 million.