Talkback

Malaysian Justice Is Too Slow

Former prime minister Najib Razak says Pakatan Harapan had failed to prove that he was involved in the bribery scandal linked to the procurement of submarines from France in 2002.

Najib said PH’s investigation in 2018 did not find any evidence that he was involved in the deal, adding that it was a part of the opposition’s propaganda to tarnish his image.

He said PH also tried to link him with the 2006 murder of Mongolian interpreter Altantuya Shaariibuu by two police officers of the Special Action Unit (UTK) who were previously his bodyguards.

In a Facebook post, Najib explained that while he was the defence minister when the deal was signed to buy two Scorpene-class submarines from French defence equipment manufacturing group Thales, it was the former prime minister (Dr Mahathir Mohamad) who made the purchase in a deal worth US$1.2 billion.

“It was not me who negotiated the deal. It was the 4th prime minister who selected the submarines and negotiated the deal,” he said.

This comes after a report that a French court had charged Thales with complicity in bribery over the purchase of the submarines.

Our comment

Malaysians deserve better protection against the delusional self-justifications of a convicted mega-crook, now years after he should have been banged up to confront his own demons.

Nothing is Najib’s fault, according to Najib. He held the top job and took credit for everything that went well, but denies all that went wrong and all that he did wrong.

And there was a lot he did wrong. Proof is never enough for the great denier. The reason Thales has been convicted of bribery is laid out very clearly in the French court papers. They have been convicted of bribing him as the known recipient of the €119 million that was paid in bogus ‘consultancy fees’ to a company fronted by his appointed side-kick, Razak Baginda.

If Najib hadn’t been judged guilty of receiving the bribe then Thales would not have been found guilty of delivering it. Period.

Najib was merely acting true to form, as the crook he has proven himself to be time and again over 1MDB. And speaking of murder, since Najib raised that matter also, Razak Baginda was also the front man when it came to the brutal killing of the woman who threatened to expose this very Scorpene bribe. Altantuya may have been standing outside Baginda’s house and Baginda may have been the person claimed to be her lover cum handler by that stage. However, it is Najib’s bodyguard who did the deed and who has testified that he was ordered to do so personally by Najib who explained to him she was a ‘foreign spy’ and needed to be …. at which point the PM gestured with a slit throat action, says Azilah Hadri.

Azilah and his junior are documented as having indeed sped direct from Najib’s house  (they say straight after this meeting and instruction) to scoop Altantuya off the street, bundle her into their government vehicle and later murder her in cold blood. It is also documented that Najib later expended huge amounts of energy in attempting to shut up a witness to all that happened, PI Bala, who testified to many aspects of this case including the fact that Altantuya was indeed stating that Najib was involved in the corruption and had also been her lover.

However, Najib still brazenly claims that he is proven innocent. Malaysians need to be spared his poisonous self-promotion, funded by their own stolen cash. Justice should be served and he should be removed from spreading his toxic and cancerous lies that only harm his country further.

Malaysian Libel Law Needs Urgent Reform

Pertubuhan Pelindung Khazanah Alam Malaysia (Peka) president Puan Sri Shariffa Sabrina Syed Akil has been slapped with a lawyer’s letter from the Pahang government seeking an apology and RM1 million in damages after she spoke on deforestation and logging in the state.

In a Facebook post this morning, Shariffa Sabrina shared that the notice was issued by law firm Messrs Hidayah Ishak & Partners, representing the state government.

The environmental activist was asked to issue an unconditional apology to the state government through all sharing platforms, especially Facebook and Instagram.

Should she fail to comply with the notice within 14 days of receiving the letter, the Pahang government will file a claim with the court without referring to her and will see other damages as well…..

“This will not be (the) last as threats, intimidation, blackmail, and abuse of power will continuously be used to try and stop me from exposing the government’s wrongdoings when it comes to crime against our priceless nature,” she said when contacted.

Our comment

Only in Malaysia, thanks to a recent outrageous Federal Court interpretation of the law, can a body such as a state government hound an individual for ‘defamation’ over criticism of its actions and speaking out on matters of public concern.

By contrast, when PAS brought their unsuccessful suit in the UK against Sarawak Report they had to frame an argument that somehow their leader Hadi Awang had been personally defamed. A political party, a government, a council, a department cannot sue in genuine democratic countries where the right to protest and freedom of expression are enshrined.

Yet in Malaysia, this brave lady who has protested at Pahang’s wanton destruction of its protected forests (for the benefit of the richest people in the state and to the detriment of the poorest) is being bullied by officials who are protecting the interests of those rich beneficiaries using public money!

More than anywhere in the world Malaysia therefore needs urgent anti-SLAPP legislation to outlaw such outrageous suits designed to silence individuals who raise attention over matters of vital public concern and official corruption.

State government bullies who use taxpayers’ money to try to silence criticism over their corruption and ineptitudes need putting in their place.

Najib's Story Shifts To Admission, But Says He Only Took "Peanuts" ($30 Million)

Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak would have only gotten a relative sum amounting to “peanuts” if he had received US$30 million (RM90,899,927.28 million at the time of the charge) from multi-billion ringgit bonds raised by 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), in comparison to funds amounting to US$577 million diverted from 1MDB bonds to fugitive Low Taek Jho and a fake Aabar entity, Najib’s lawyer suggested today.

Najib’s lead defence lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said this while cross-examining the 12th prosecution witness Azmi Tahir.

Azmi, a former chief financial officer of 1MDB, was testifying in Najib’s power abuse and money laundering trial involving the alleged misappropriation of more than RM2 billion of 1MDB funds.

Shafee was going through the transactions that followed after 1MDB subsidiary 1MDB Energy Limited (1MEL) took on debt via the issuance of a US$1.75 billion bond in May 2012 in order to fund the purchase of an independent power producer.

Shafee listed various transactions in a chart he showed to Azmi, including how US$907.5 million of the US$1.75 billion bond was paid out on May 22, 2012 to 1MEL, and that a sum of close to US$577 million was on the same day then transferred to a British Virgin Islands company known as Aabar Investments PJS Limited — now known to be a fake entity that had a strikingly similar name to the actual company Aabar Investments PJS.

Our comment

Wow! For the first time in the seven years it has taken (almost to the day) to get this far in holding Malaysia’s crook ex-Prime Minister to account he (or at least his counsel) has admitted that yes he did filch from the fund.

But…. according to Mr Shafee (who is himself waiting to be tried for filching money also) Najib should be given credit for only taking $30 million out of a trail that saw $577 million stolen in total from the first bond issue the fund took out through Abu Dhabi using Goldman Sachs.

What a modest man his client turns out to be… by comparison, is the argument with which Shafee seeks to beguile the court and melt the hearts of the Malaysian people and the world. Just a poxy $30 million when in his position he could have taken so much more.

Except, Najib did take a whole lot more as everyone knows full well and as will be made perfectly clear at later stages of the trial when the full picture of larceny is dissected. Remember the $681 million that went into Najib’s account just two days after the third and final bond was raised – that came from 1MDB and from that bond issue.

What’s more other sums were pouring into the same KL account – $170 million from Julius Baer in Hong Kong was one – that took the PM’s personal war chest to over a billion dollars in advance of GE 13 before he later shipped the majority back out of the country and into a swathe of hiding places round the globe.

And what about the half billion that went to his wife’s diamond and jewellery habit? Does that not count?  And the quarter of a million to his step son’s movies and who really owned that yacht?

In short, what an idiot admission to have finally made after years of claiming first no money had disappeared from the fund, then that it had all been the scheme of Jho Low!

Kanga Kitingan Fights To Keep His Pet Payback Deal

The State Government has appointed Sabah Foundation as a local partner to implement the controversial carbon trading deal known as the Nature Conservation Agreement (NCA).Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Jeffrey Kitingan (pic) said that the state Cabinet endorsed the decision last Wednesday for Sabah Foundation to work closely with Singapore-based firm Hoch Standard Pte Ltd over the NCA.“Hoch Standard will assist Sabah Foundation in this new role by providing the necessary technology and know-how to ensure the implementation of the NCA will be done accordingly,” he said.

“Sabah Foundation will sign a separate service agreement with Hoch Standard. Under the service agreement, Hoch Standard is expected to pay Sabah Foundation 5 per cent of its gross revenue from the NCA for the Sabah Foundation’s activities related to the NCA.”It is believed that Hoch Standard will be paid some 30 per cent of earnings from the carbon deal.Sabah Foundation is a state body that was set up to further educational opportunities for Sabahans but has since diversified into other economic investments and activities to boost its income.

Our comment

Given the deputy chief minister’s exposed position over this notorious affair you might have thought the Sabah state government would have wheeled out someone else to make this announcement about an alleged state cabinet decision to keep the discredited Carbon Cowboy scam alive (aka the Nature Conservation Agreement).

However, clearly no one else is prepared to touch the issue. Equally clearly Sabah’s deputy CM has remained determined to double down and leverage his ‘kingmaker’ position as the defector who has kept the present coalition in office by keeping alive this this astonishingly outrageous but lucrative proposal.

The billions in potential private profit earmarked under this so-called NCA Agreement are due to go to an anonymously owned BVI company called Lionsgate. Perhaps Mr Kitingan can enlighten Sabahans as to the shareholders given it is he who has driven this deal?  So far he has refused to do so.

Meanwhile, his latest ploy is to attempt to fig leaf the “Incomplete”, “illegal”, “inequitable”, “absurd”, “unfair” arrangement (to quote Sabah’s own Attorney General) by dragging the already discredited Yayasan Sabah into the mix as the new ‘local partner’. This is an organisation that has sadly been enmeshed in numerous timber kickback scandals over the years as the forests it was meant to conserve were mowed down.

Indeed, some of those scandals involved the very same Mr Kitingan who was charged in 1990 with receiving over a million ringgit in timber kickbacks whilst himself director of the Yayasan foundation (his brother being chief minister of the state). His aide de camp at Yayasan was the same Stan Lassa Golokin who is now the ‘authorised representative’ of the Singapore private company Hoch Standard Pty Ltd that is party to the ‘NCA’.

As for the laughable claim that “Hoch Standard will assist Sabah Foundation in this new role by providing the necessary technology and know-how” might one remind readers that Hoch Standard is a one thousand dollar special purpose vehicle set up to sign the agreement that gives it a guaranteed 30% of the putative $80 billion that Sabah could stand to earn in profits from carbon sales under this arrangement. All costs of the arrangement will be carried by the state and there is a cast iron penalty clause.

Hoch Standard therefore is a shell company without staff, expertise, resources or anything else beyond the dubious record of Mr Golokin to recommend it as an advisor to Yayasan Sabah. By agreeing now that in return Hoch Standard will pay 5% of its loot to the foundation Kitingan has merely agreed to a minor haircut on the deal in what he plainly sees as a compromise having been caught red handed trying to loot the state.

Everyone knows the situation is preposterous and outrageously corrupted. However, the present Sabah government is in hock to Kanga Kitingan and his Hoch Standard, Lionsgate consortium. So, rather than bring in the cops they are giving in, in just the same manner they let the timber kickback king Musa Aman off his string of kleptocracy charges.

Meanwhile, the same Kitingan who achieved his good election result by preaching racial politics against Sabah’s settlers is now abandoning those voters by agreeing to tackle the necessary concessions he had promised to oppose.

If the present state government is unable to act against Kitingan Sabahans should accept the fact that corrupt actors will never work in the public interest and vote the lot of them back out.

Blatant Greed Will Crash Sarawak's Ambitions To Make Easy Carbon Money

Mambong assemblyman Datuk Dr Jerip Susil has revealed that Sarawak might pass a law or Bill on carbon credit trading this year.

When that happens, the state will be the first in Malaysia to do so.

Dr Jerip, who is also  Assistant Transport Minister said, “This year, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg is going to enact a law or Bill to ensure that there is carbon credit trading (in the state). By June this year, there will be laws to ensure how to do carbon credit trading. It will be one of the big things coming this year.

“Our neighbouring country, Indonesia is already far ahead with carbon credit trading.

“After all, with the climate changes in the world, there are people who are going to pay a certain amount of money for  preservation of forest and timber  in the jungles. But we need laws for that, so either by May or June, the law will be there..

“There is also going to be a huge conference in Sarawak this year on how to do environmental sustainability in all these areas because Borneo is one of the oldest rainforests that still exist  (in the world),” he said during the official launch of the new logo for Persatuan Usahawan Bidayuh Penrissen (PUBP)  at a renowned hotel here on Saturday (Feb 19).

“Imagine all the Bungs – Bung Penrissen, Bung Bratak, Bung Sepit – all the mountains, all the Tapang trees being preserved and  every Tapang tree being paid five United States dollars every year,” added the assistant minister.

Our comment

Back in 2006 the Editor of Sarawak Report was invited to Sarawak to attend a grand ‘Environment’ Conference…. about conserving the oldest rainforest in the world.

What she discovered was that the then Chief Minister, having grabbed control of all the levers of power and positions of state, had in fact been mowing down the 150 million rainforest as fast as he could cash it in. In the process he had magically become a multi-billionaire. Sarawak Report was formed and has been watching these greedy hypocrites ever since.

Now his successor has plainly decided to follow much the same playbook. Having conducted a preposterously stage-managed election in the middle of Covid to secure his position against his rivals Abang Jo has now likewise taken control of every position worth having in the government to make absolutely sure no one can question anything he does. Parliament tends to sit for a fortnight a year in Sarawak.

However, now that most of the once abundant rainforest is in fact destroyed he is looking to his various options. On the one had he is seeking to destroy what little jungle is left along the borders with Indonesia where his government this week said it was applying to Putrajaya to get support to ‘develop’ the region to take advantage of Indonesia’s plans to move huge numbers of people to destroy the other side of the border to build a new capital (having sunk the previous one).

On the other he hopes to make money out of pretending there is jungle to claim carbon credits off besides the areas he is seeking to log and destroy.

A basic education is needed for these power grabbers who are blinded by the dollar signs in their eyes. REDD credits are not going to be offered to a country who destroys what jungle they have, whilst promising to grow something somewhere else. And palm oil plantations do not count as ‘conserving jungle’ either – nor do Acacia or other plantations. To brag about the oldest jungle in the world when you are responsible for having destroyed it is an obnoxious advertisement for the rest of the world as well.

The present rulers in Sarawak do not love nature, the trees or the people and animals they love cash. They want all the symbols of extreme wealth without realising these are things you cannot eat and that the resources they are destroying are finite. However, those who are proposing to pay for carbon credits do understand these things and they will not invest in a sham that does them no favours with regulators or their governments.

It is time these greedy old men were replaced by a more sensitive and educated younger generation who might just be able to repair some of the epic damage that has been done to save a living habitat for their own children and beyond.

Who Owns Lionsgate (BVI) Mr Kitingan?

Everything is alright about Sabah’s Nature Conservation Agreement (NCA), said Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.

“It is going good (well). Those who make noise, they do not understand or because they have some personal or private interests, that is why they said something.

“Actually nothing is not good, everything is good, the only thing is that we do not open about it (NCA) earlier,” he told reporters after the launching of “We Be-Leaf” initiative programme at a preschool here.

Last year, the 100-year agreement was secretly signed between Sabah government and Singapore’s private firm Hoch Standard that would look into carbon and nature trade deals involving up to 2 million hectares of state land.

Jeffrey, who is also state Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, had said that the Chief Minister had instructed him to realise the carbon trade deal.

Following the expose, conservationists and politicians have come forward to object to the deal due to lack of transparency.

Our comment

So, the Deputy Chief Minister has had the brass necked cheek to accuse those who have raised the alarm over the disgraceful secret plot to put billions of dollars worth of Sabah’s carbon assets into the hands of a private company of having “personal interests” in the matter!

Thus does he highlight the exact concern about his own management of the shady arrangement which his own government’s Attorney General has now slammed as “Incomplete”, “illegal”, “inequitable”, “absurd” and “unfair”.

However, in the process of making this libellous allegation against his critics, before hilariously claiming he can say no more because the matter is ‘sub judice’ (it is not yet a criminal case so sub juice does not apply), Kitingan made a major admission. He said that the Chief Minister had put him in charge of the whole process of setting up this carbon trade deal.

So we are now confirmed that Kitingan is indeed the man responsible for this entire scandalous state of affairs. He drove through the secret ‘negotiated’ contract that was NOT put to tender nor any form of consultation either. He CHOSE the private company Hoch Standard with whom this deal that is so contrary to the interests of the people of Sabah was made.

So, Mr Kitingan, who is the anonymous shareholder of Hoch Standard, namely the beneficial owner of Lionsgate in the British Virgin Islands? If anyone knows the answer it has to be you.

It is this anonymous entity that holds the ‘private and personal interest’ in this bogus Nature Conservation Agreement not those who rightly criticised the deal for all the reasons that have been pointed out by the state’s own chief law officer.

Unless Mr Kitingan is prepared to stop hiding behind his ludicrous and baseless excuse that the matter is now the subject of a civil action (which accords no privacy rights in the manner he suggests) and unless he is prepared to provide this simple piece of what ought to be public information about who owns Lionsgate, then the people of Sabah are fully entitled to come to an obvious conclusion.

That conclusion would be that the owner is either Mr Kitingan himself or interests connected to him. In short, that the “private and personal interest’ is his own.

When Prime Ministers Steal & Princes Sport Gold Planes What To Expect?

A senior officer, Rostam Affendi Salleh, then wrote to MACC chief commissioner Azam Baki to inform him of their doubts. A police report was also lodged by MACC, naming Shahrum, Khirulnizam and two others as suspects in the alleged wrongdoing.

Shahrum was subsequently arrested.

In the course of their investigation, police found that he had used the seized cash and made several purchases, including:

  • A RM750,000 house in Kota Warisan, Sepang;
  • Luxury watches totalling RM397,580;
  • Two Ducati motorcycles worth RM600,000;
  • A Ford Raptor;
  • Two plots of land in Jerantut, Pahang, worth RM483,220;
  • A Honda Civic costing RM265,930; and
  • A Mercedes Benz A250 costing RM130,000.

The court ordered all the assets to be forfeited by the government.

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Our comment

So, a junior MACC officer stole over a million ringgit of money confiscated from the country’s crooked spy boss, stolen from the country’s crooked prime minister and he spent it on luxuries and show off tat.

What to expect when those he learns from and looks up to all behave in the same childish and undignified way, whilst so many are living off the proceeds of dishonesty and crime?

Everywhere one looks amongst Malaysia’s leadership you see a combination of loud claims of religiosity followed by the worst possible spoilt brat behaviour, immorality and showing off. Whether it is the son of the leader of the PAS ‘Islamic’ Party happy to pose on expensive super-bikes (apparently it wasn’t his), the son of the would-be returning prime minister (of Wolf of Wall Street fame), the family of Taib Mahmud (or just about any Sarawak politician) or the son of the Sultan of Johor (gold jet) the example shown is of shallow, undignified and childish behaviour – and the showing off of questionable wealth.

There is one significant difference. The lowly copycat has been scooped up in a trice, was convicted and punishment in the form of jail and a lashing, whilst the boastful bullies who run the country continue to strut about flaunting their impunity and brushing aside election rejection like a fly on their sleeves.

Justice now urgently needs to be seen to apply to all in Malaysia – starting with the crooked ex-PM – or else the wrath of an abused Almighty will imminently afflict the nation in the form of economic collapse, famine, infighting and all the other consequences of poor governance and resource destruction.

Does This Lady Minister Deserve A 'Gentle' Beating?

Outrage as Malaysian female minister advises husbands to beat their ‘stubborn’ wives ‘gently’ to discipline them for ‘unruly’ behaviour

  • Siti Zailah Mohd Yusoff suggested husbands sleep separately from wives for three days if the women do not change their ‘unruly’ behaviour
  • But if that did not work, the minister said the husbands should strike their wives
  • Deputy minister for women and family accused of normalising domestic abuse
  • A Malaysian female minister has sparked outrage after she advised husbands to beat their ‘stubborn’ wives ‘gently’ to discipline them for ‘unruly’ behaviour.

    Siti Zailah Mohd Yusoff, the deputy minister for women, family and community development, was accused of ‘normalising’ domestic violence by urging men to strike their wives to show how strict he is and ‘how much he wants her to change’.

    In a two-minute video posted on Instagram called ‘Mother’s Tips’, the deputy minister firstly advised husbands to ‘discipline’ their ‘stubborn’ wives by speaking to them.

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Our comment

As the news media across Europe falls around in disbelief over the words of this ‘woman’s’ minister from Malaysia, Sarawak Report would seek to suggest her views do NOT represent most women of her country.

But, certainly it does resonate for quite a lot of reactionary men to whom she plainly wants to pander within her own government.

Siti Zailah Mohd Yusoff does not articulate what qualifies one as a ‘disobedient’ wife during her homily of advice. Given that she suggests removal from the marital bed as an early punishment one assumes it is not reluctance towards one’s dear beloved.

However, in the eyes of most of the sort of men who would agree with her line of thinking, her own entire lifestyle is surely utterly disobedient in itself?

What does Ms Yusoff think she is doing putting herself forward as a decision making official in her country’s Parliament when there is a kitchen to cook in, a house to clean and more babies to produce or be looked after?

She appears to be extremely above herself riding around in a ministerial car, going to an office, giving speeches, being photographed and telling others what to do. This is man’s work!

Indeed, Ms Yusof’s husband appears to have been neglectful of his duties in not reining her in much sooner…. although perhaps the salary is nice to have?

She should take a deep breath, because according to her own advice she could be in for a gentle beating and a change of quarters and daily duties!

Fool To Take On A Brave Woman?

Through a press release on Jan 12, Azam’s lawyer Megat Abdul Munir, announced the filing of the defamation action. The MACC chief is suing Lalitha in his personal capacity…

Lalitha has since said she stood by her reports and criticised the MACC’s attempt to rope in the police to investigate her.

Azam came under the spotlight over his ownership of 1,930,000 shares in Gets Global Berhad (previously KBES Berhad) on April 30, 2015, worth around RM772,000 at the time.

The share ownership in 2015 and 2016 raised questions on whether it is commensurate with his income as a public servant.

In a special press conference on Jan 5, Azam did not dispute the ownership of the shares but claimed they were bought in his name by his brother. The shares have since been transferred to his brother.

Nearly a week later, on Jan 18, the Securities Commission (SC) announced that it had concludedits inquiry into the case and that it is unable to conclusively establish that a breach under Section 25(4) of the Securities Industry (Central Depositories) Act 1991 (SICDA) had occurred.

However, following criticism, the SC clarified that Azam had “control” over his own trading account and found no evidence of proxy trading.

Our comment

It is a very common reaction for powerful males to move to sue to shut up criticism that has resonated with the public. It provides a short term answer to the problem, allowing them to say “It wasn’t true and I have sued”.

After that, they hope, the noise will die down and their big bucks will force a settlement after which they can tell their questioners “I sorted that person out in court. It was all lies”.

Except, the risk in this tactic is the act of putting a nose around one’s neck that can pull very tight indeed…. especially if they are indeed guilty of the matter they have been criticised for and if the person they are suing happens to be a determined lady.

In this case Azam seemed to have gained satisfaction from his enforcement colleagues at the SEC who backed out of prosecuting him for breaking rules (the police having rightly refused to take criminal action against Lalitha over a minor flaw in her CV – which Azam had outrageously attempted to get them to do).

However, now they have been pressed as to why they let the MACC chief off the hook on what appears to have been a blatant breach of stockmarket rules – i.e. allowing his brother to use his account – the SEC have turned out to be less than helpful after all.

The reason they let him off the hook, it is now explained, is because he WASN’T allowing his brother to use his account as he was using it himself! With that Azam’s entire defence has gone pouf in terms of his rebuttals against Lalitha whom he is suing for writing about those share deals.

The court case is ongoing and the noose just tightened. Looks like Lalitha is going nowhere and the noise is as loud as ever!