I picked up this letter written to Malaysia Today by a  chap calling himself  “SAS ( Saham  Amanah Sabah) Victim.” This is interesting subject, perhaps to me, because I have many  friends in KK who had invested a fair bit and lost their pants in this investment, after a steep fall of the SAS unit price during Yong Teck Lee’s time as Chief Minister. Till today many curse and swear Yong Teck Lee and Ambrose Lee whom they say is the “mastermind” behind the lost in their life-savings.

What happen was in 1998 there was a share swap deal between Warisan Harta Sabah Sdn Bhd of which Yong Teck Lee was Chairman and Suniwang Holdings Sdn Bhd of which Ambrose Lee was the Boss. The rational of entering into this transaction was that the Government through Warisan Harta could utilise a RM50 million fund. Yes Ringgit 50 juta. The RM50 million was to support counters in which Warisan Harta and Sabahans had investments.

As a result of the share swap deal Warisan Harta lost RM114 million. The RM114 million was lost after Warisan Harta under the chairmanship of Yong Teck Lee disposed its blue chip MISC shares in return for the acquisition of NBT shares and Sugar Bun shares. Both counters are delisted ever since. Both of these share counters  NBT and Sugarbun were connected to Suniwang which was controlled by Ambrose Lee.

A whopping RM 114 million losses in this deal for the State.

So don’t you have to have somewhat of a criminal mind to be a politician? Most politicians are devious. They’ll sell “hope” to the public and they’ll make it seem very rosy and people don’t even know that their investment will be paid for out of their hard-earned savings. These politicians act like it’s fine. Politicians have no problem telling people something’s fine when it’s not. Politicians are worse than criminals because really when you think about it all a criminal does is just steal your money… what politicians do is to lie to people. They’ll lie to you… they’ll tell you what you want to hear… it’s a good deal…plenty of money to make…State Government investment, so must be good. People don’t know people like Ambrose Lee the CEO of Public Companies has got no money and cannot give personal guarantees for 200 million dollars to get this deal fix. It will surely fail because the motive is to milk the cow dry on the expanse of the people.

So I mean aren’t politicians similar to criminals? I know there are exceptions to the rule – like Yong Teck Lee?  Don’t make me puke lah! Read below and make your opinion heard.

Birds of the feather flock together: Joseph Ambrose Lee comes to the rescue of Yong Teck Lee

By SAS Victim

For more than a decade Sabahans have forgotten about Joseph Ambrose Lee Yok Min, 52, who once boasted of himself as the new Syed Kechik of Sabah, after he failed in his scandalous schemes to take over the RM30-billion timber wealth of Yayasan Sabah.

The late Syed Kechik was the de facto Chief Minister of Sabah when he was legal adviser to the late Tun Datu Mustapha bin Datu Harun who ruled the state with an iron-fist from 1967 to 1976.

Ambrose was back in Kota Kinabalu, having made his home in Perth, on August 7 at the Sutera Harbour Resort defending his bosom buddy Yong Teck Lee, who was Sabah Chief Minister from 1996 to 1998, over the fiasco of Saham Amanah Sabah (SAS) arising from a scandalous share-swap between Warisan Harta, the Sabah government’s investment arm, and Ambrose’s Suniwang Holdings Sdn Bhd.

More than 55,000 Sabahans, most of them pensioners and low-income civil servants, lost all their life-savings when the price of the state unit trust plummeted to 17 sen from its RM1.00 unit price soon after he sealed the deal when he became Chief Minister.

At the press conference, Ambrose (that’s what his few friends and many foes call him) made a feeble attempt to defend Yong over the missing RM50 million from the share-swap which Yong has been unable to explain to Sabahans.

Ambrose stressed that he paid RM50 million in cash through Innosabah Securities, the stockbroker, to Warisan Sabah in a deal that saw him exchanging his over-priced shares of NBT and Sugar Bun for Warisan’s blue chip MISC shares.

No one has disputed this. But what has not been answered is that the money received by Warisan was never given to SSB as Yong has said. Yong was the Chief Minister and Warisan Chairman. Yet he has failed to tell Sabahans what happened to the RM50 million which he, as Warisan Chairman, received and which he never gave to SSB.

Dr Yee Moh Chai, Minister of Resource Development and Information Technology, told the assembly on August 3 that Saham Sabah Berhad (SSB) which manages the SAS has confirmed to him that it has never received the RM50 million out of the share dealings of Warisan Harta.

At the assembly, Dr Yee pointed out that it was Yong who linked the disastrous share-swap of blue chip MISC shares belonging to Warisan with shares of NBT and Sugar Bun, which were cornered speculative stocks. The swap resulted in a loss of RM114 million to Warisan.

Yong had defended the share-swap. As Warisan’s chairman, he was on record to say that “the wider policy in entering into this transaction was that the Government through Warisan Harta could utilise the RM50 million fund.”

Yong said the RM50 million was to support counters (stocks) on the then Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange (KLSE,now Bursa) in which Warisan and the people of Sabah had investments. The true outcome, according to Dr Yee, is that as a result of the share-swap deals, Warisan Harta lost RM114 million.

Ambrose blamed Warisan for the loss because it refused to accept his offer to pay RM96 million for the difference between its purchase and market price of NBT and Sugar Bun shares which he said fell sharply because of the Asian financial crisis.

What he failed, in Ambrose’s own words, to tell the “entire populace of Sabah” was that he did not have the cash to pay RM96 million. He suggested another share-swap! Thus Warisan sued Suniwang for RM179,825,000. True enough, Suniwang folded. Warisan did not get a sen. If Ambrose had the money, would his flagship Suniwang Holdings Sdn Bhd collapse like a pack of cards?

Ambrose blamed Musa Aman, who was then Finance Minister, for rejecting again his proposal in 2007 to settle his debt of RM179,825,000 by transferring shares of Borneo Marble Corporation Sdn Bhd which he owned through proxies.

He said Warisan had entertained his proposal but the Sabah government rejected it. Warisan officials said it was true that they entertained his proposal but it did not accept it because the company was a liability.

Recently filings with the Companies Commission of Malaysia have proved this to be so. Borneo Marble was formerly known as Galmore Resources Sdn Bhd and was a fully-owned subsidiary of Suniwang Sdn Bhd which was owned by J Ambrose Sdn Bhd.

As at the end of December 2006, Borneo Marble suffered a pre-tax loss of RM108,793. There are no records of its financial filings from 2007 to 2009.

Ambrose boasted that his NBT owned 200,000 acres of timber land under Forest Management Unit which was bought by someone else.

Officials said what he failed to say was that NBT was in debt to the tune that the company was worthless and the timber land was pledged to a bank as collateral. The property was sold by the bank to recover its loan to NBT.

Ambrose had banked on the Sabah government to bail him out which it had rightly refused.

By his own admission, he has a Receiving Order of the court placed on his assets under the control of an official assignee. He has not been adjudicated a bankrupt yet.

Any chance of the Sabah government bailing him out now hinges on the remote chance of Yong Teck Lee becoming Sabah’s Chief Minister again. And why shouldn’t he? After all it was Yong’s late father, Yong Yun, who financed Ambrose’s law studies in London.

Comments
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    Like

  2. TV Selangor says:

    Good, Yong Teck Lee Sinking In His Own Spin : The Art Of Bullshit! Selvarajasomiah's Weblog.

    Like

  3. Tzu Wong says:

    Hi Mr. Selva,

    What is your opinion on the Repco episode in relation to the Warisan/Sunniwang fiasco??

    Tzu Wong

    Like

  4. amir says:

    Yong Teck Lee takkan berubah. Sampai sekarang dia masih sama seperti dulu.

    Like

  5. SMS your views…

    I found your entry interesting thus I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…

    Like

  6. Sinosabah says:

    Mr.Selva,
    I have the same suspicion like what Gunduhin feels, especially after reading your MA, an appraisal , you still owe us the part 2 of what you have promised. YTL has announced in paper that he will not join back BN, why should he join an upcoming opposition alliance in the next GOverment ? Why not think of the positive side, does PR want a friend or enemy ? Why can’t PR and Sapp sit down to compromise, let Sapp contest 35 Adun seat and 8 Mp seats. PR shall contest 25 Adun seats and 18 Mp seats! Isn’t that a fair solution ? Sabahan still love Sabah based party to lead the state goverment as we have lost a lot by evidence of 20 points agreement. Do not forget, Sabah join Malaysia as one of the four partnership with Singapore so the same principle must go along while negotiating with PR.

    Like

  7. Sinosabah says:

    I do agree with you politicians are crooks and some as bad as criminal! But in Malaysia, can you name any good politician ? Mahathir ? Sabahan hates him for project IC.
    Anwar ? He was the one who mastermind and paid Lajim Ukim 5M to cause the downfall of PBS ? Pairin got no balls now due to prostate cancer who once our Hero who dare to pull out from BN. Jeffrey Kitingan, the king of Frogs, who jump and join almost all parties in Sabah and finally settle down in PKR.
    So, why only pin on Yong tet lee ? He did openly kick back the ball and challenge Musa to release a white paper for public review ? Why BN has been quite, and Yee Moh Chai, the mentor of YTL character assassins said white paper is toilet paper !
    If you all PKR supporters can forgive the mistakes committed by your leaders, why not YTL be given a chance ? Where are those MPs who acclaimed by Anwar that will cross over to PR on last Sept16 ? Wasn’t that Sapp the only party dares to pull out ? It’s PKR owe Sapp a favor and don’t be ungrateful and PR must identify your enemy crystal clear, it’s BN and not Sapp. You all end up splitting the opposition votes when keep attacking YTL. The result would be Sabah will remained as BN fixed deposit! Do you want this happen ? Think about it.

    Like

  8. Gundohin, you are wrong man. I’m not hired nor I support BN. My fear is YTL might just join BN after he gets the state. There is no full commitment from him that he would support Pakatan after he wins. Remember YTL only had working problems with Pak lah but not with Premier Najib the UMNO Boss.

    The wind of change which is blowing through this Malaysia, and whether we like it or not, this growth of consciousness that “BN must be gotten rid off” is a political fact. We must all accept it as a fact, and YTL must give the commitment that after winning he will not join BN, which, so far he has not.

    I will continue to speak my mind, in the meantime, Gundohin. Thanks.

    Like

  9. Gundohin says:

    And so it appears that BN Sabah has hired a gun to character assasinate YTL and any other opposition!

    Shame on you Sevaraja Somiah!

    Like

  10. Ms.K says:

    If all of the people really think that YTL is the one fully responsible and MUST apologize for the SAS incident….Then, who to blame if the whole world economic collapse?

    Or we still pointing finger to one party as to comfort the anger of all and ignore the real solution that really can help to re-build the whole thing?

    Like

  11. izuan says:

    I think ALL not only YTL should start telling the rakyat the truteh..be it CM or PM..evrythg..from oil block L&M issue sampailah to this one..YTL..may start first….then Sakaran on the ousting of TUn Mustapha..then the frog jumping of PBS froggers to UMNO..etc..hahahaha…evryone Taubat and tell the the truth..including the rakyat…hahaha

    Like

  12. SAS Investor says:

    Why till today the evil umno gomen relunctunt to issue WHITE PAPER to tell the TRUTH instead of using the media to continue their BLAME GAME against ex-Sabah CM?

    Why police and MACC reports have been made about SAS FIASCO till todate NO ACTION TAKEN against YEE MOK CHAI and Herbert Timbun?

    Very Obvious, to CONDEMN ex-Sabah CM must be responsible for SAS FIASCO was merely a POLITICAL DIRTY tactic. There will be NO SOLUTION except SLANDERING and personal attack for evil sake!

    What about Amanah Selangor, Johor and etcc …? All their ex-CM or MB must also be responsible for the share dropped during the FINANCIAL CRISIS in 1997.

    Like

  13. Do you guys have an RSS feed?

    Like

  14. Paul Kon says:

    Have YTL and Ambrose caused for the downfall of SAS prices ?

    What I want to hightlight here is “What about the duties of SAS trustee ?”

    Is it not the trustee being the watch dog for SAS ?

    Not to forget that millions of ringgit is being paid to the trustee as annual fees.

    I seriously think the Trustee is responsible.

    Like

  15. Hey Sunday says:

    Why is it he refuse to answer the questions? i don’t understand… He better do so, otherwise the blame will always goes to him

    Like

  16. تعلم البوكر says:

    I LOVE THIS BLOG!!!

    Like

  17. Hachiko says:

    YTL has mastered the art of bullshit perfectly! He managed to avoid giving explanation for more than 10 years. Bravo YTL! BRAVO!

    Like

  18. Hachiko says:

    Only a guilty man would not dare to give any explanation.

    Like

  19. pendekar malaysia says:

    isu SAS telah byk merugikan kerajaan negeri sabah dan ia menjejaskan nama baik negeri sabah. YTL yang menjadi ketua menteri ketika itu harus bertanggungjawab, tak perlu nak dolak dalik.

    Like

  20. adam says:

    politics is dirty;so are politicians;they are liars & thieves!

    Like

  21. Leprechaun says:

    YTL,
    You can run, but you can’t hide!!!

    Like

  22. Akinabalu says:

    YTL should give the explanation. He was the one who pursue the people and he was the CM at that time.

    Like

  23. Akinabalu says:

    If I’m not mistaken, those who are involved investing in the SAS committed suicide upon knowing their life saving is completely lost.

    Like

  24. crap says:

    We would think twice before voting Yong again, this is for sure.

    Like

  25. Alan says:

    It is clear that Yong made a mistake while handling the SAS issue, but he continue to deny it.

    Like

  26. sabahanmuda says:

    mmm..jadi memang KM lah yang tentukan keputusan..kan??Jadi tidak perlu YTL cakap banyak. Cuma penjelasan saja yang perlu dan kenapa YTL setuju pada masa itu untuk melabur. tidak salah melabur sekiranya sudah membuat tafsiran terlebih dahulu.

    Like

  27. kilangSabah says:

    CM the main in the administration minister. so, if the CM wrong decide. the CM must we blame not other. CM must know what he want to do before decide something. This the risk for to be a CM. this same what happen with YTL about do the invest in SAS during he is CM sabah.

    Like

  28. rutan says:

    kerugian SAS semasa pemerintahan YTL menunjukkan bahwa YTL tidak boleh mentadbir sabah dgn baik. sehingga kini penjelasan belum diberikan.

    Like

  29. Ah Beng says:

    The appropriate person to provide the explanation is none other than Yong Teck Lee. After all ,it was him who persuaded 55,000 Sabahans to invest in Saham Amanah Sabah. Many was convinced with his words and decided to invest. But, unfortunately for them, it didn’t turn out to be how YTL said it would be. YTL and Ambrose Lee all the way wanted to make a big cut for themselves but God Is Great the financial crisis came along and screwed both of them real hard. That is what you get for cheating innocent people. So now YTL cannot sleep oh! SAS fiasco still haunting him!

    Like

  30. Joan says:

    I learned something valuable from this article….which is…..not to vote for YTL in the next election.

    Like

  31. SEW850i says:

    Bestie’s tries to protect BFF and blame the State Government for not bailing him out? Funny that he had made mistake for not doing the financial filings.

    I also heard about Ambrose Lee having said what ever business he does, semua tidak jadi liao.

    As for YTL, he is evading the issue all together about SAS. I sense more curse and swear to come after bestie defends bff..

    Like

  32. kilangSabah says:

    YTL persuaded more 55000 sabahan to invest in SAS..so, why YTL not studies first before make the decision to invest??

    YTL, this the old issues and so forget it, know we join together to develop sabah and sovle the any problem in sabah and sabahan.

    Like

  33. martycruz says:

    this is the truth about YTL.. anyway, we should learn from the past instead of blaming each other..

    Like

  34. CareBear says:

    YTL should give an explanation to the people. It is because of his convincing “lie”, many ppl lost their life-saving money.

    Like

  35. CareBear says:

    Xavier,
    It’s definitely a no-no. Wouldn’t want the same liar becoming the next cm.

    Like

  36. tiger beer says:

    The matter is still not clear & the mystery surrounding the whole issues is still much left unsolved…55,000 investor have been affected by it, & Yong doesn’t even want to explain what happen…not even apologizing because he has misguided people into believing him that the share swap was meant to gave more profits…

    Like

  37. Xavier says:

    Should we vote him again and risk having history repeated?

    Like

  38. rutan says:

    ya.. YTL, please give explanation.

    Like

  39. Victim says:

    YTL must be give explanation about this matter. Why take 10 years?

    Like

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