UPDATED 9:05pm, September 4
If you had read the earlier version, please scroll to the bottom of the post for the expanded content. Otherwise just start from the top so you get the full picture.
My brothers and sisters in Christ, friends in the community and abroad, I write this post with great heaviness. When I first came across the information that you are about to read, I could not believe my eyes. If this come to light, the name of the church will be dragged through sewers and many may abandon their faith in disgust. Yet, I am comforted there is a time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to die and a time to live. A time to tear down, and a time to build. A time for war and a time for peace. It is my heart and prayer this series of exposé will cause sin to die and righteousness to flourish once again amongst Anglican churches in Sabah.
To Christians who are not Anglicans, I hope in God you will find the grace to forgive the grief and shame the Anglicans had brought on to the community. I ask you to pray for us, as we seek to purge evil, expose corruption, restore the church to righteousness. Remember there are many of us who are hurting and crying daily for God’s salvation. Stand in the gap with and for us that God will be merciful. When do you do this for the least in the Kingdom, you do it for our Lord Jesus.
To all the priests, pastors and intercessors in the Diocese of Sabah, I pray God will remove the scales that prevent us from seeing God’s truth. We are a big family. In whose name do we serve? Wasn’t Jesus that died for us? Yet today, you and I face must draw a line. Where does our allegiance lies? With God or with men?
Finally, I pray all of us can see beyond the ugly facts and feel the grieving heart of God at this time…
What you are about to see here is a part of the much sought after Management Letter from the honorary auditor, George Lim. This letter came with the auditor’s report. While the auditor’s report was published in full in the Diocese’s financial report, former Diocesan Treasurer Paul Chong refused to disclose this Management Letter to the Synod. This letter holds the key understanding and identifying problematic areas in the Diocese accounts.
Thanks to a whistleblower, this blog has obtained this key evidence. If in doubt, you are welcome to verify the authenticity of the information with the auditor. The Management Letter should not have been kept secret from the Synod delegate. Yet if you read it, you will figure out why the authorities fought hard to bury its content.
RM10.6 million, under Project Fund, was used between 2010 & 2011, and parts of it without any details. Anyone auditing the account will need to see where the money went with supporting documents. The auditor also could not find any Standing Committee approvals for the use/transfer of funds. Neither did Synod approve any budget for such expenditure. Questions:
1. If the Standing Committee and Synod did not approve it? Who approved it then?
2. More importantly, where did the money go?
3. How did the Treasurer Paul Chong issue payment without supporting document?
4. Who are the other signatories? Is Canon Yong Thiam Choy one of them?
5. How did Canon Yong Thiam Choy who is not a member of the Standing Committee get to sign cheques when he has no privy of the transactions and decision making of the Standing Committee?
6. Is it a crime under Malaysian law to authorize payment without the necessary supporting documents?
7. If you were a manager and this this letter was addressed to your branch. What do you think would happen to you as a manager?
The Synod missed a golden opportunity to query the account because this key evidence was withheld. Would it have approved the accounts if they had seen this letter? At hindsight, the whole Synod was rigged with key leaders covering for each other so that damaging information was withheld. Any delegates feel they had been misled?
The only way to see the real movement of funds is to conduct a forensic audit with full access to all the accounts & ledgers. It can be a time consuming and expensive exercise.
In the Bishop’s pastoral letter on May 27, 2012, the Bishop claimed he merely carried out mandate by Synod and he was guided by the Standing Committee in all his transactions. Yet this statement is contradicted by the auditor when he scrutinize the accounts. Either the Bishop was lying or the auditor was wrong.
UPDATED 11am, September 5
A phone call (+603-2148-8222) to Thai embassy revealed Thailand never had a Second Home visa. All types of Thai visas are available to Malaysian passport holders for FREE. There are no Thai visas that required a deposit.
This finding begs a lot of questions:
a) Why did the Bishop recorded the RM85,000 for a visa application that does not exist?
b) Since the visa is free, how was the RM85,000 spent?
c) Has Bishop refunded the money to the Diocese?
UPDATED 9:05pm, September 4
It’s a lot of legal and accounting jargons to process. So let me try to illustrate actual facts/numbers through a fictional story (italicized).
A bishop and his assistant together with their wives flew to New York. The official reasons was to recruit a teacher for a school the diocese is running, and to preach in a couple of churches. Why did the wives come alone? Well, the bishop’s wive runs the Diocesan Academy Board. But why did the assistant bishop & his wife went as well? It was a mission trip. By the way, the quartet bumped into the bishop’s former personal assistant and her husband in New York too. What a small world!
Well, between preaching in two Sunday services, and meeting up with the teaching candidate, the 3 couples went shopping at 5th Avenue, caught Jeremy Lin at a NBA game, had great meals in five star hotels, watched a musical, took a dinner cruise around New York Harbour, Brooklyn Bridge and Ellis Island. Then they headed south for some Jazz music at New Orleans and more sightseeing. The bill come up to around RM180,000. It was charged to the Mission Fund because the trip was about recruiting a teacher and visiting some Christian schools; and the Diocesan Academy Board operates under this fund.
Come the time for audit, the accountant noted RM921,533 was spent in Mission Funds in 2011. The RM180,000 bill was just a lump sum expenditure under “Diocesan Academy’s study visit and recruitment” with no receipts to back up the amount.
Here ends the fictional story. Do you get a better picture what perhaps the auditor was saying?