The announced departure of Women and Family Development Minister Shahrizat Abdul Jalil could not have come a moment too soon given the depth and breadth of the Cowgate scandal which has now festered for months.

It brings relief to many who have deplored the slow reaction of enforcement authorities in acting decisively to address the unfolding mess which has focused international spotlight on gross corruption in Malaysia.

In commenting on Shahrizat's ‘resignation', Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak disappointingly described the action as one of sacrifice in the interest of the government and the party.

Najib had justified his statement on grounds that there is "no proof so far that she had committed any offence in terms of law".

In the light of the statement by National Feedlot Corporation CEO Wan Shahinur Izmir Salleh, Shahrizat's son, admitting that the company had used funds meant for the development of a cattle business to purchase luxury condominiums, the prime minister, it would seem, has overstepped his attempts at neutrality...

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