Sean (Hisham) Murray, husband of Taib’s daughter Jamilah, appears to have unwittingly exposed his wife’s illegal dual nationality!
Under BN’s own strict laws, Malaysians are not allowed two passports and they have to surrender their Malay nationality if they take citizenship elsewhere.
However, last week Murray told a Canadian TV company his wife was a “Canadian citizen”, although she is clearly registered as a Malay in the numerous companies that she owns in Sarawak.
It is common knowledge that Malay nationality is valuable for shareholders and directors of Malaysian companies, because most government contracts require that companies should have ‘Bumiputera Status’. This means they should be at least 51% owned by indigenous Malay nationals.
However, if Jamilah has decided to take Canadian citizenship, she should have surrendered that status under Malaysian law.
“My wife and I are private Canadian citizens”!
For these reasons the statement by Sean Murray to Canada’s Global TV last week, is extremely embarrassing. He told the company, “my wife and I are private Canadian citizens”. Yet company records in back in Malaysia clearly state the opposite.
We can demonstrate that 51 year old Jamilah still claims Malaysian citizenship in all the documentation concerning the 87 companies, where we have identified her as a shareholder and director. Her ID card number is given as 600919-71-5044 and she is registered at Wisma Mahmud, the Headquarters of CMS.
Still on the register!
Perhaps even more controversially, Jamilah is still registered to vote in the upcoming Malaysian election! If the daughter of the Chief Minister has ceased being Malay, by virtue of taking Canadian citizenship, she more than most should know that it is encumbent on her to remove herself from the electoral roll!
So, Sean Murray’s self-pitying statement has landed his wife in plenty of hot water!
He made the slip-up while trying to explain to the prime time show 16X9 why he and his wife were reluctant to be interviewed for a programme about deforestation in Sarawak, which asked questions about the investments by the Taib family in Ottawa, Canada.
In the letter Sean Murray claimed that he and Jamilah have not transferred profits from Sarawak into their multi-million dollar property empire in Canada, the US, Australia and the UK.
The wording of the letter, which could be seen on screen says:
“My wife and I are private Canadian citizens. She has lived here for more than 30 years and we have no interest in being interviewed in the press about ourselves, our business, our relatives or about Malaysian politics…. you should know we neither take part in Malaysian politics nor speak for the Chief Minister” [Sean Murray]
Need for immediate clarification
Given the contradiction between this public statement and the public documents in Malaysia, it is plainly necessary that Hisham and Jamilah Murray now clarify their nationality status. The people of Sarawak and the authorities in Malaysia are entitled to know the legal position of one of the country’s largest shareholders, who is also the recipient of large amounts of taxpayers’ money for public projects.
Since dual nationality is treated as a crime by the Malaysian government (although other countries sensibly treat it as perfectly legal) Jamilah should not expect to get away avoiding the penalties, just because of who her Daddy is. These penalties could involve the revoking of her citizenship, if she does not forego her Canadian passport.
Surely people in Malaysia deserve better than a bunch of politicians, who act as if they and their families are above the very laws they create?
No money taken from Sarawak – it is just “passive investment”
Sean Murray’s personal letter to the TV Station was accompanied by a separate legal letter that was also shown on screen. This also raised more confusion about the couple’s links to Sarawak.
On the one hand the letter acknowledged Sarawak Report’s findings that the Ottawa company, Sakto, was started by the Taibs and that the Chief Minister had given his daughter money. However, it claimed that none of the money made by Jamilah in Sarawak is ever invested in their companies abroad:
“Jamilah Murray has some passive investments in Malaysia, but Sakto and Sakti, and Sean Murray do not. On the question of whether any of that money has been used to fund Sakto projects in Canada or Sakti in the U.S., the answer is no”
This leaves some glaring questions about what Jamilah does with the massive profits made from her enormous number of Sarawak companies or indeed whether she really is the owner, not just a name on a piece of paper!
So, the Murrays need to own up and tell people exactly what is going on, given the huge amount of public contracts that have been put in the way of Sarawak companies which they own or are directors of.
Sean Murray’s further attempt to imply that he personally has no interests in Sarawak should also be properly explained. He has in fact been involved in at least two of the state’s most important recent construction projects, which have both been supported by Taib’s own Government in Kuching.
These are the latest Isthmus development project for a major hotel and retail complex, driven by the firm Premier Cottage Sdn Bhd, of which he is a director, and the Kuching Tower, for which his firm in Canada was the project manager.
“My clients have no interest or involvement in the politics of Malaysia”
Indeed nothing could be further from the truth than the claim by the Murrays’ lawyer that ”my clients have no interest or involvement in the politics of Malaysia”!
The lawyer even alleges that it is Sarawak Report and not his clients, which has “a declared political interest” in Malaysia.
But, Sarawak Report does not have investments worth billions of ringgit, which all depend on the munificence of a family member for as long as he remains in power. Jamilah on the other hand does, and therefore by definition has an interest and involvement in the politics of Malaysia, which she so strenously denies.
Our growing body of evidence shows that the involvement of Sean and Jamilah Murray in Daddy’s regime and business ventures goes far further that the “passive investment” acknowledged in their lawyers letters.
In fact, the links between the Murrays and Taib’s business helpers show strong business ties between the Sarawak potentate and his daughter and son-in-law, who act as directors of so many of the companies he has started up worldwide.
We will be examining these links during our continuing coverage of corruption in Sarawak and its role in the destruction of the world’s tropical rainforests.