MP SPEAKS | When the heinous murder and the mysterious disappearance of Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul hit world headlines early this month, the first person I thought of was Altantuya Shaariibuu who was murdered and whose remains destroyed with C4 explosives in Shah Alam on Oct 16 twelve years ago.
The ghost of Altantunya Shaariibuu will continue to haunt former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak and Malaysia until there is a full and satisfactory investigation as to the motive for the heinous murder and the real murderers brought to justice.
Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin told Parliament yesterday that the police will take appropriate action against Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor if the couple is implicated in the murder of Altantuya.
He was responding to Monday’s speech by the DAP MP for Bukit Gelugor Ramkarpal Singh in the debate on the Mid-Term Review of the 11th Malaysia Plan on the revelations made by businessperson Deepak Jaikishan on the Altantunya murder in a recent recording which was uploaded online.
Although Deepak’s video recording had since been deleted from the Internet, it should pose no difficulty for the police to locate the video which is making its rounds on social media in the last few days, and most important of all, police can get confirmation from Deepak himself on the authenticity of the video.
As Ramkarpal told Parliament on Monday, Deepak had clearly stated that Najib and Rosmah were involved in the murder of Altantuya.
In fact, at stake is not just the reputation of Najib and Rosmah, but Malaysia’s international reputation and standing as a developed and civilised society where the rule of law and justice prevail in the country, where people do not disappear for no rhyme or reason or get murdered with no motive.
In view of Deepak’s video recording accusing Najib and Rosmah of being involved in the murder of Altantunya Shaariibuu, are both of them going to surrender themselves to the police for a re-opening of the investigation into the motive for the murder of Altantuya Shaariibuu?
Instead of submitting to the rule of law and justice whether on the Altantunya murder or the 1MDB “kleptocracy at its worst”, Najib is clearly trying to obstruct the course of justice with his statement yesterday urging the Pakatan Harapan government to stop finding fault with him and his past administration, and focus instead on saving the country's economy.
Is Najib suggesting that Harapan should not re-open the investigation into the Altantunya murder to establish its motive, something which the Najib premiership failed to do or to get to the to the bottom of the 1MDB scandal?
The past five days had been Najib’s worst five days in his public life.
Last Friday, Oct 26, Najib’s house of cards propping up his claim that the international 1MDB corruption and money-laundering scandal was fake news and a concocted international conspiracy by his political enemies to topple him from power collapsed when Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Adel Ahmad Al-Jubeir met Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and denied that Najib’s infamous RM2.6 billion in his personal bank accounts had come from Riyadh.
But the damage to Najib of this Saudi Arabian denial was nothing compared to Najib’s disgraceful interview with Al Jazeera, where Najib staged a walk-out after he was unable to answer with credibility and authority difficult questions which the Al Jazeera interviewer, Mary Ann Jolley, had put to Najib whether on the 1MDB scandal; the RM2.6 billion donation in his personal banking account; Rosmah Mansor’s 22-carat US$27.3 million pink diamond necklace; the more than US$200 million transferred into the account of his stepson Rizal Aziz; fugitive financier Jho Low; his 38 criminal charges of corruption, criminal breach of trust and money laundering or the murder of Altantunya Shaariibuu. The interview was telecast worldwide on Saturday, Oct 27, 2018.
Najib’s Al Jazeera interview was particularly damaging as it served as concrete proof as to why the four million voters who had voted for Umno/BN in the 14th general election on May 9, 2018, were very wrong in supporting a global kleptocracy, kakistocracy and rogue democracy and why they should join the 5.6 million voters who voted for Pakatan Harapan to build a New Malaysia which is a leading nation for integrity and a world top-class nation and a model of a united, progressive and democratic society.
Yesterday, worse was to come for Najib. At the Anti-Corruption Summit 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, there were three blows to his solar plexus, viz:
· Dismissal by Mahathir of allegations that Najib’s 38 criminal charges of corruption, criminal breach of trust and money-laundering were politically motivated as they were based on investigations by enforcement agencies tracing the 1MDB money and its trail.
· Revelation by Abu Kassim Mohamed, the head of National Centre for Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption (GIACC) and former chief commissioner of the MACC that the MACC had in 2015 found that Najib’s claim that the RM2.6 billion he received was a donation from Saudi Arabian royalty to be false after a meeting with the FBI and the US Department of Justice in Washington; and
· The announcement by the Attorney-General Tommy Thomas that the Malaysian government would challenge the US$5.78 billion consent award granted to Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Company or Aabar Investments PJS as Malaysia’s 1MDB was defrauded by Najib.
In his disastrous Al Jazeera interview, Najib had indirectly admitted to the moral, economic and political catastrophes of the 1MDB scandal.
Is Najib prepared to spare the country from further pain, agonies and suffering and cooperate with the various investigative agencies by “telling all” whether on the 1MDB scandal or the Altantuya murder?
LIM KIT SIANG is member of Parliament for Gelang Patah.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.