Taib family sponsors Canadian war monument
Ottawa-based Sakto Group announces sponsorship amidst corruption debate
(LOOS EN GOHELLE, FRANCE) Sakto, an Ottawa-based real estate group chaired by Jamilah Taib Murray, the daughter of Sarawak Governor Taib Mahmud, has sponsored a new multi-million dollar monument commemorating a Canadian World War I battle in northern France.
According to a Sakto press release, the Hill 70 Memorial at Loos en Gohelle “was made possible and specifically designed by Canadian real estate company, Sakto Corporation.“ The new memorial park with a 15-metre obelisk at its centre was inaugurated last Saturday by Canada’s Governor General, David L. Johnston, and high-ranking military including General Jon Vance, Chief of Defence Staff, and Harjit Singh Sajjan, Minister of National Defence.
Sakto’s sponsorship announcement was made amidst a growing debate on the real estate group’s connections to timber corruption in Malaysian Borneo.
Last Sunday, the Ottawa Citizen ran a long story covering the Bruno Manser Fund’s Safe Haven Canada report which is showing how the Taib family firm had grown quickly despite constant losses. During its first 12 years of operations, Sakto had received at least $69.5 million in loans from its Malaysian shareholders. Part of the money is believed to stem from payments made by Japanese timber merchants to the Taib family.
Canadian political online magazine, ipolitics.ca, today followed up with a story highlighting an attempt by the Canadian government to cover up Sakto’s breaches of OECD disclosure standards for multinational enterprises.
The Bruno Manser Fund condemns Sakto’s abuse of military history to whitewash its reputation.
“This is a classic case of abuse of philanthropy by a firm with a dodgy background“, the Fund’s Executive Director, Lukas Straumann, said. “Instead of paying for a war monument in France, Jamilah Taib should indemnify Sarawak’s indigenous peoples for the destruction of their livelihoods in the Borneo rainforest.“
Sakto is consistently refusing to answer questions on its beneficial ownership and the full amount of funding it had received from Taib Mahmud and his closest family members.
(12 April 2017)
Sources used for this release:
back to overview