Shah Alam – Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim has claimed ignorance over allegations that his former aides were issued severance payments amounting to a staggering over RM2.5 million after he stepped down as Selangor mentri besar.
According to The Star today, the former state chief executive appeared surprised when informed of the figures, and said he was not sure how much the eight aides were paid.
“If the calculation is correct, then it’s correct but I don’t think so,” Khalid was quoted saying after a function in Sungai Besi yesterday.
The Bandar Tun Razak MP then explained that his aides were given payments under a “voluntary separation scheme” (VSS) that was offered to them upon his departure from office.
He said the decision was made by the state-owned Mentri Besar Incorporated (MBI), and was even presented to the state executive council, the English daily reported.
“The board is made up of three people – the mentri besar, the state secretary and the state financial officer,” he was quoted saying.
The embattled leader also reportedly said that MBI had cash reserves of up to RM112 million and that the VSS payments to his aides took up no more than two per cent of the amount.
“I followed all procedures, they can be audited,” The Star quoted him saying.
Yesterday, Khalid’s successor Azmin Ali refused to confirm or deny news of his administration’s plan to recover the monies paid to the former’s aides, saying he needs further details first.
“Let me get the details first,” the PKR deputy president said when he approached by reporters at an event this morning.
On Friday, Seri Andalas state assemblyman Xavier Jayakumar had hinted at the matter on microblogging site Twitter.
“Sel gov has instructed its state investment arm, MBI, to recover RM2.5mil given to former aids to TSKI?” the PKR political bureau member wrote using his Twitter handle @xavierjayakumar.
But Xavier did not write any further tweets on the same issue.
This September, Azmin took over the Selangor Mentri Besar post from his former political rival Khalid – who was forced out before serving out his five-year term.