A new audio message purportedly comes from Ayman al-Zawahiri, al Qaeda's second in command.
(CNN) -- A new audio message purportedly from al Qaeda's second in command surfaced Thursday on radical Islamist websites, calling for revenge for a Pakistani scientist convicted of attempting to kill Americans in Afghanistan.
A U.S. court sentenced Aafia Siddiqui to 86 years in prison in September after an American jury convicted her this year on seven charges, including attempted murder and armed assault on U.S. officers.
In Thursday's audio recording, the speaker identified as Ayman al-Zawahiri says his message -- titled "who will come to the aid of scientist Aafia Siddiqui" -- is two-fold.
'In regards to my message to America, I say, go ahead and judge, because you are only judging yourselves. ... Attack others because in return, you will only be attacking yourselves," he says. "By the lord of heaven and earth, we will fight you until the hour of the judgment day comes or until you stop your crimes against us."
He goes on to address Pakistan: "I want to say these few words because now this is the time for action. Your government and the commanders of your army have transformed you into a people without a dignity, without honor and without pride and even without any value whatsoever. The Americans and their crusader allies occupy your country. They kill your people, they destroy your villages and they imprison your women. Is there any more disgrace and humiliation than this?
"The path is clear and quite obvious. Whoever wants to free Aafia Siddiqui and revenge for her honor against those who assaulted her and assaulted every other Muslim woman, let them join the ranks of the mujahedeens and let them support them and be part of them because there is neither pride nor dignity without seeking jihad."
In 2008, Siddiqui fired a rifle at two FBI agents, a U.S. Army warrant officer, an Army captain and military interpreters when they entered a room where she was being held in central Afghanistan. She did not hit anyone but was injured when the warrant officer returned fire.
Afghan police had arrested her outside the Ghazni provincial governor's compound after finding her with bomb-making instructions, excerpts from the "Anarchist's Arsenal," papers with descriptions of U.S. landmarks and substances sealed in bottles and glass jars, according to a September 2008 indictment.
The indictment said Siddiqui had "handwritten notes that referred to a 'mass casualty attack'" listing several locations in the United States, and "construction of 'dirty bombs.' "
The notes also "discussed various ways to attack 'enemies,' including by destroying reconnaissance drones, using underwater bombs, and using gliders," the indictment said.
At her sentencing last month, Siddiqui said, "I don't want any violence in my name. If you do anything for me, please educate people about Islam because people don't understand that it is a religion of mercy."
Demonstrations against her conviction had broken out in Pakistan, where her case had become a cause célèbre.
Hindraf has done it’s homework at the Public Records Office (National Archives) in Kew, London on 3rd June onwards. To start off with there is no such thing as the social contract as UMNO has been repeatedly proclaiming, insisting and conveniently implementing their bully racist and religious supremacist policies.
The social contract is a very recent phenomena created by a mere UMNO Member of Parliament. In 1986 Datuk Abdullah Ahmad the Member of Parliament for Kok Lanas, Kelantan he said;
“The political system of Malay dominance was born out of the sacrosanct social contract which preceded national independence. Let us never forget that in the Malaysian political system, the Malay position must be preserved and that Malay expectations must be met. There have been moves to question, to set aside and to violate this contract that have threatened the stability of the system”.
“The May 1969 riots arose out of the challenge to the system agreed upon out of the non fulfillment of the substance of the contract. The New Economic Policy (NEP) is the programme after those riots in 1969 to fulfil the promises of the contract in 1957.”
The NEP must continue to sustain Malay dominance in the political system in line with the contract of 1957. Even after 1990 there must be mechanisms of preservation, protection and expansion in an evolving system (Abdullah Ahmad, quoted in The Star newspaper, 31, Viii 1986) – Marvis Puthucheary – Malaysia’s “Social Contract” in the book Sharing the Nation by Noraini Othman and two others at page 12.
Written records of the interparty discussions of the Alliance leaders indicate that the Constitutional provisions on the “special position” were understood more as a protective measure for the Malay community which was then socio-economically disadvantged. Referred to by Raja Aziz Addruse and Helen Ting (NST 6/7/08 page 22).
In their oral submissions to the Reid Commission the Alliance leaders requested the insertion of a constitutional provision for the review of the “special position” of the Malays 15 years after independence. Though subsequently removed, this implies that the Alliance leaders themselves did not intend the provisions to be a permanent feature of independent Malaysia.
The founding political bargain was later construed as and renamed “the social contract.” The original alliance “deal” or pragmatic compromise was “rebounded” and given legitimacy by association with modern liberal and democratic political philosophy and it’s core idea of the “social contract” of free and equal citizens as joint stakeholders in the political order. Marvis Puthucheary – Malaysia’s “Social Contract” in the book Sharing the Nation by Noraini Othman and two others at page 20.
For example, earlier work suggest and the recently published memoirs of Tun Dr. Ismail confirm that the “special position” of Malays in the Constitution was interpreted as nothing more than ‘a temporary measure to ensure their (Malay) survival in the modern competitive world (Ooi 2006 : 83), a temporary ‘handicap’ as in golf to encourage and support Malays in the key competences of modernity while they so to speak, lifted and improved their game. These special Malay rights, Tun Ismail held, should not apply in perpetuity, only for a very limited period, and would not last any longer than that. The ‘slur” of their continuing existence would ensure their termination before very long at Malay insistence and from a determination to uphold Malay self respect. Marvis Puthucheary – Malaysia’s “Social Contract” in the book ‘Sharing the Nation’ by Noraini Othman and two others page 23.
As per Hindraf’s research at the Public Records Office at Kew, London on 3rd June 2007 onwards, we noted that at the hearing of the Reid Commission on 27/9/56 at 10.00 a.m, Tun Razak had said that the special position of Malays should be reviewed 15 years after Independence. Chairman Lord Reid had asked, “Are you putting any period of compulsory review”, and Tunku Abdul Rahman replied that the suggestion is that there should be a review every 15 years. The main thing the special position of Malays should be reviewed every 15 years. Chairman.” “15 years for Federal and State” and the Tunku replied, “Yes (ref page 34,35 and 36 of 50 Years Of Violations Of The Malaysian Federal Constitution by (the UMNO controlled) Malaysian Government by P. Uthayakumar dated 28/7/2007.
It is therefore plain and obvious that in pursuance of the UMNO Malay muslim supremacy agenda in particular in preserving the Indian poor and creating the future Indian poor, UMNO has refused to implement the second limb of Article 153 (1) which guarantees the legitimate interests of the non Malays (in particular the Indian poor). But UMNO has abused the first limb of Article 153 (1) which provides for Malay Special Privileges and the non existent social contract to implement Malay muslim supremacy to the brim. So much so that after 53 years of independence Malaysia has evolved to become the world’s most racist and religious extremist and supremacist regime when the last such regime was put to an end with the demise of the South African apartheid regime.
GUA MUSANG, Nov 4 — Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah has declared that his relationship with the Kelantan PAS state government would not be affected despite the Barisan Nasional (BN) win in Galas today.
The Kelantan prince said he has always maintained a good relationship with all politicians.
“I have a good relationship with all political leaders. Whether they are from PAS, DAP and PKR,” the Gua Musang MP told reporters after the announcement of the Galas by-election results where BN’s Abdul Aziz Yusoff defeated PAS candidate Dr Zulkefli Mohamed by 1,190 votes.
“That is democracy. We don’t only have to debate formally, but also privately to address the people’s problems,” said the politician popularly known as Ku Li (picture).
Ku Li was appointed BN’s Galas election director by Datuk Seri Najib Razak amid concerns that the party veteran would throw his support behind PAS.
The former Petronas chairman has been vocal in supporting the PAS-led Kelantan government’s demand for oil royalty from Putrajaya, and had become a virtual outcast in his own party.
Throughout the Galas campaign that started on October 26 Ku Li was also subjected to personal attacks and accused by PAS of neglecting the Orang Asli voters and of vote buying.
However, he said his strategy of mounting a low-profile campaign had worked and called on the BN leadership to adopt his strategy.
“I hope the top leadership will follow our method here so we can create a harmonious campaign environment. Rallies will only cause congestion and raise security issues,” said Ku Li.
The former finance minister had discouraged public rallies and preferred the campaigned to be run by branch leaders at the respective polling districts.
Ku Li also urged the government to lift restrictions on the local media to allow the opposition to adopt the same strategy.
“After 53 years of independence, let us use television, print media and alternative media to present our views. There is no need for ceramah or public rallies because the coverage of television and radio is wider.
“To strengthen democracy, this is the best way. There is no need to curb the freedom of newspapers,” he added.
KUALA LUMPUR: Barisan Nasional has scored a double victory in the Batu Sapi and Galas by-elections, giving Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak's administration a resounding stamp of approval and sending the Anwar Ibrahim-led opposition back to the drawing board.
For the Batu Sapi parliamentary seat in Sabah, BN candidate Linda Tsen won with a landslide victory, chalking up a margin of 6,359 votes over her nearest rival, PKR's Ansari Andullah.
Her majority was even greater than her late husband Edmund Chong's in 2008 when he got 3,708-vote majority. The latter's death in a traffic accident had paved the way for the by-election.
Tsen garnered 9,773 votes while Ansari got 3,414. The other contender in the three-way tussle, SAPP president Yong Teck Lee came in a disappointing third with 2,031 votes despite initial projections that the former chief minister would win the seat.
Observers noted that while Tsen managed to secure support from both the Malay/Bumiputera and Chinese voters, Yong had lost out to Ansari on the Malay/Bumiputera votes.
Despite his defeat, Ansari can take some comfort in the fact that he managed to rope in more votes than the “taiko” Yong despite being written off by observers.
The BN victory gives embattled Chief Minister Musa Aman some respite and on the surface, blunts the political significance of his detractors and the opposition.
Batu Sapi has 25,582 voters, of whom 1,535 are postal voters. The Election Commission revealed that the voter turnout for the contest was 61%.
Blue wave sweeps Galas too
In the peninsula, the BN wave swept across the Galas political landscape in Kelantan, drowning PAS in its wake.
The ruling coalition's candidate Abdul Aziz Yusoff snatched the former PAS state seat with a majority of 1,190 votes.
Abdul Aziz garnered 5,324 votes while his PAS rival Dr Zulkefli Mohamad got 4,134 votes, with the voter turnout being recorded at 83%.
The results also indicate that the Chinese voters have backed BN after ditching the national coalition in 2008.
The Galas by-election was called following the death of PAS assemblyman Che Hashim Che Sulaiman, who won the seat with 646-vote margin in the 2008 general election.
Pundits predicted that the double victory could prompt Najib to call for a snap general election.
The ruling coalition appears to be on track to redeem itself following its worst ever performance in the last general election, which saw it lose, for the first time in history, two-thirds majority in Parliament and several states.
KUALA LUMPUR; PKR deputy presidential hopeful Mustafa Kamil Ayub has joined his rival Zaid Ibrahim in expressing dissatisfaction over the party elections.
In a statement today, the party vice-president called for the polls to be postponed until all grouses are resolved.
Mustafa and Zaid, the Federal Territories PKR chief, are embroiled in a three-cornered tussle, which also includes vice-president Azmin Ali, for the number two slot.
Azmin, who is said to be party supremo Anwar Ibrahim's preferred choice, is currently leading the pack.
Meanwhile, Mustafa said to ensure the growth of PKR, the party's central election committee should also be suspended until confidence in the election system is restored.
"The election process must be suspended until the party or the new election committee takes proactive action to remedy the flaws. This action is needed as we do not want whatever problems that have cropped-up to recur,” he added.
Mustaffa also said he has completed a memorandum containing proposals on ways to better the election committee and it will be submitted to party president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, who also oversees the committee.
"The party's good intention to allow each member to vote to pick national leaders will come to naught if the appointed election committee is not effective.
“We don't want our members to be cheated by some for their own political career. We are fighting for justice and the voice of our grassroots members must be given the justice it wants," he added.
'Seen to be taking sides'
Without mincing his words, Mustafa said the election committee has failed to ensure fairness in the election process.
"The party's election process (to pick national leaders) began on Oct 29, however our hope to get a fair electoral process from the election committee is disappointing.
"Although there were a number of objections raised on the election process until today no action has been taken to address the issues,” he said.
"The integrity of the committee is now being questioned by various parties. There have several incidents and clear irregularities in the election process with the committee seen to be unprofessional and taking sides.
“This includes the inconsistency in the announcement of total votes obtained by candidates especially involving the deputy president's post," he added.
PKR became the first political party in the country to introduce the one-member, one vote system where ordinary members are allowed to pick national leaders.
The party is currently conducting its polls to pick national leaders, with polling in three states starting last weekend.
Since the election began, various allegations have been levelled against the party headquarters and the election committee.
KUCHING: A 10-year-old schoolboy here received 10 “whacks on his palm” for bringing fried rice with pork sausages to eat in school during recess.
A senior teacher at the St Thomas Primary School here caned Basil anak Baginda 10 times on his palm for bringing non-halal food to school.
His mother, Angela Jabing (photo:left), disclosed this incident at a press conference yesterday much to the shock of several PKR women leaders who were present.
"My son Basil anak Baginda, aged 10, has been with St Thomas’ Primary School, Kuching, since his kindergarten years.
“On Oct 15, I prepared fried rice with pork sausages for my son to bring to school for his recess. However, I was shocked to learn that he was punished and caned 10 times on the palm by the senior assistant for bringing non-halal food to school," she said.
"I have never received any written circular from the school that children cannot bring non-halal food to the school," added the distraught mother.
Jabing said on Oct 19, she went to the school to seek a clarification of the incident.
"I met the principal who was at the time sitting with the senior assistant in the senior assistant’s room.
"Instead of clarifying the reason for my son’s punishment, the senior assistant said that he could not remember the incident,” Jabing said.
According to her, the senior assistant had summoned her son to his office to explain himself and had later told her not to blow up the incident as it was a sensitive matter.
Jabing said that the headmaster had also told her that in February this year, the senior assistant had announced during the school assembly that the studentswere prohibited from bringing any non-halal foodstuff to school, even for their own consumption as an act of respect for the Muslim students.
“I was not satisfied with the explanation, so I wrote in asking for a written explanation within three working days.
"On the third day, I received a call from the principal who requested to meet me on Oct 28. I still insisted on a written reply on the matter and was told by him to collect the letter the following day.
“The letter did not properly answer my question on why my son was caned 10 times for eating fried rice with non-halal sausages. Is this a justified action taken by the school on schoolchildren?” she asked.
Ministry must investigate
Jabing also wanted to know whether the school was trying to implement this “non-halal” food rules on children’s food brought from home.
She also wanted to know if the instruction came from the Education Ministry.
Meanwhile, PKR women leaders present at the press conference have demanded that the ministry investigate the incident.
They said if left alone, the issue could turn “very ugly” especially in a mission school.
GEORGE TOWN: Seven Christian families whose houses are located in the compound of the St Francis Xavier Church here are in a dilemma.
They have been told to move out from the area by this year without reasonable compensation from the church management and landowner – the Roman Catholic Bishop of Penang.
Jelutong PPP division chairman Andrew Rajah said it was “unfair and unethical” for the church to do this, especially since the families and their ancestors had been living there for more than a century.
He said they were allowed to live in the place “forever” by the British colonial masters
“The British built and managed the church. The colonial rulers built houses within the church compound to provide homes for poor Christian families, especially ethnic Tamils.
“They allowed the residents to live permanently in the area as part of the church's social responsibility,” he added.
The church acreage covers some 19,374 sqm of land.
In September, the families received a summon each from the lawyers representing the Bishop's office calling on them to vacate the houses soon. Each household was offered RM10,000 cash in compensation.
But the sum would dwindle after deductions for outstanding rentals plus interests, which could amount to RM7,525 each.
The families were paying a monthly rental of RM200 each until 13 months ago when the church management suddenly stopped collecting the rent
“The accumulation of rental arrears were caused by the church's action, not residents' inaction,” said Rajah, who is helping the residents take legal action against the Bishop's office.
Technically, the land-title was under the Bishop's ownership courtesy of the Roman Catholic Bishops (Incorporation) Act 1957.
But the residents claimed that conventionally the property belonged to Christians associated with the St Francis Xavier Church for over 100 years.
Rajah claimed that historically the church property was meant for religious, residential and education purposes.
He said it was supposedly a Tamil Christian community settlement in the city.
“But now the church management wants to flush out the residents for commercial purposes. The management has already turned several vacated houses to bakeries and coffee shops,” he added.
Mostly senior citizens
The residents claimed that the property land-title was enlisted under the Bishop's office some 100 years ago because virtually all poor Tamil Christians were then illiterate or naïve of the whole process of land ownership.
Resident Bellimin Raja Lourdes Nathan, 70, argued that it was morally wrong for the church management to shirk its responsibility towards the community.
Pointing out that the majority of residents were senior citizens, he said they did not want to burden their children, who were mostly living elsewhere and struggling to make their ends meet.
Moreover, he said the senior citizens had been earning their own livelihoods and living in the church area all their life.
Recently, the seven families had sought the help of the Bar Council Legal Aid Centre to represent them in court but their request had apparently gone unheeded.
The residents had also attempted to meet Bishop Antony Selvanayagam but to no avail.
“He has told us to talk to his lawyers when we wanted to meet him,” said Nathan. "As a bishop, he should have met us. But he acts like a landlord and treats us like squatters.”
Despite numerous attempts, FMT could not contact the bishop for comments.
Now, whenever Dr Mahathir is criticised about how he ran the country or whatever, he always says that he does not make sole decisions. All decisions are Cabinet decisions. The largest financial scandal, the PKFZ disaster, was a Cabinet decision, not the sole decision of the Prime Minister.
THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
You have probably already read Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Blog posting, ‘PERKASA and ME’, plus the replies -- ‘PERKASA and ME…a short reply to Tun!’, 'My Reply to Tun Mahathir Article – Pembinasa and Me' and ‘Reading Tun Dr Mahathir’.
Well, now let me reply as well.
How many of you remember the Broadway musical of 1951 called ‘The King and I’? It was later made into a movie, which launched Yul Brynner’s ‘botak head’ look. Actually he is not botak (bald) at all. Like me, he shaved his head. And to prove I am not botak I am now keeping my hair long again.
So the Umno people can no longer call me botak gemuk (bald fatty). Just gemuk. And I may even go on a diet and become kurus (thin) again as well. I might even launch an anti-ISA hunger strike in London and really lose weight.
Anyway, let’s see about that one.
Now, why am I mentioning ‘The King and I’? Simply this. Dr Mahathir should have titled his piece ‘PERKASA and I’, not ‘PERKASA and ME’. After all, the play/movie was called ‘The King and I’, not ‘The King and ME’.
So there you have it. Bad English. Wouldn’t you say ‘I love you’ and not ‘me love you’, unless you are a Native American (a.k.a. Red Indians)?
Okay, let’s get serious. By the time Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi took over as Prime Minister on 1st November 2003, Malaysia had already seen independence (Merdeka) for 46 years. Almost half that 46 years was with Dr Mahathir as Prime Minister -- slightly over 22 years. A few more months and Dr Mahathir would have ruled Malaysia for half that 46 years.
Abdullah ruled Malaysia for slightly over five years. Considering that one term is five years, this means Abdullah was only a one-term Prime Minister -- although he took the country through two general elections. Dr Mahathir, however, was a five-term Prime Minister.
When Abdullah took over as Prime Minister, he inherited the policies, Cabinet, problems, and whatnot, of the previous regime. He would have needed one term to dismantle the old policies and address the ills and wrongdoings of the previous regime, and then implement his own policies and changes, which would take him another term.
This means we need to evaluate Abdullah’s performance over two terms, not one term. One term is not enough.
But Abdullah was first of all not allowed to introduce any changes. As soon as he tried, Dr Mahathir attacked him. And then he was ousted before he could serve his second term. So we will never know whether, if Abdullah was allowed a second term, he could have turned things around. Therefore, is the failure due to the incompetence of Abdullah or is it because he was blocked from implementing his plans?
Now, whenever Dr Mahathir is criticised about how he ran the country or whatever, he always says that he does not make sole decisions. All decisions are Cabinet decisions. The largest financial scandal, the PKFZ disaster, was a Cabinet decision, not the sole decision of the Prime Minister.
Okay, if this is how decisions are made, then how can Abdullah take sole responsibility for whatever went wrong? And remember, Abdullah inherited Dr Mahathir’s Cabinet when he took over. This was not Abdullah’s Cabinet but the Cabinet of the previous regime that Dr Mahathir headed for 22 years.
When Dr Mahathir makes mistakes the Cabinet has to be blamed. Mistakes made during Abdullah’s term of office are Abdullah’s fault entirely, nothing to do with the Cabinet.
Finally, I would have imagined that Dr Mahathir, as a seasoned enough politician, would not unwittingly admit that he is behind PERKASA. His latest Blog posting, however, reveals that he calls the shots when it comes to PERKASA. I can’t imagine him making this mistake.
Then again, did he really make a mistake? Dr Mahathir is too clever to make such mistakes. I can only suspect that it was intentional. It was to send a message to Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak that he opposes the 1Malaysia in favour of Ketuanan Melayu and that he will use ‘his’ PERKASA to do this.
I smell another ouster in the cards. When Dr Mahathir said he does not understand what Abdullah’s Islam Hadhari means and that he only knows one type of Islam, this was the beginning of the end for Abdullah. Now Dr Mahathir says the same thing about 1Malaysia and I see this as also the beginning of the end for Najib.
When Abdullah tried dismantling Dr Mahathir’s legacy, the latter went for the former’s jugular. Would Najib now dare try what Abdullah tried? If he does then he will suffer the same fate as Abdullah. However, if he does not, then he becomes merely a proxy Prime Minister with Dr Mahathir as the de facto Prime Minister. Either way Najib will suffer.
When Najib proposes 1Malaysia and all those other reforms, Dr Mahathir opposes him. But when Najib proposes a RM5 billion 100-storey building even grander than the KLCC Twin Towers, Dr Mahathir supports it and says it is good for the country.
Do you get my drift now? Najib is running this country and implementing policies the way Dr Mahathir would like them to be. That is the only way he can stay on as Prime Minister. And when Najib tries to ‘break away’ and launch his 1Malaysia, Dr Mahathir launches his PERKASA through proxy (Ibrahim Ali) and challenges it.
That, in a nutshell, is what is going on.
By the way, Umno is most likely going to win the Galas by-election today. And the Umno people are going to say that this is Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah’s win and not Umno’s win. If Najib had gone down to Galas to campaign then PAS would have won instead.
Some say PAS purposely ‘allowed’ Umno to win as a ‘favour’ to Tengku Razaleigh who is fighting hard to get the oil royalty for Kelantan. The word on the ground was that the PAS machinery was told not to attack Tengku Razaleigh. This, in fact, happened in 2008 and that was why Gua Musang went to Tengku Razaleigh. And I got this from the horse’s mouth.
And of course the Batu Sapi by-election in Sabah is a foregone conclusion.
MACC chief counsel Abdul Razak Musa, who made a fool of himself and his agency during his interrogation of forensic expert Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand, did it again on Thursday when he insisted on insinuating a letter retrieved from Selangor political aide Teoh Beng Hock's bag as an "alleged suicide note".
This despite the fact that police investigating officer ASP Ahmad Nazri Ismail had told the court early on that the letter was not a suicide note.
Ahmad had said the letter did not satisfy the usual requirements of a suicide note. He said he had checked with an expert - a Dr Badiaah Yahya from Hospital Permai, Johor - and found that a person who commits suicide would usually pen a note giving reasons why he chose to end his life.
This was not apparent in the letter retrieved from Beng Hock's bag, Ahmad said.
However, MACC's Abdul Razak Musa repeatedly called the undated letter “the alleged suicide note” although even the Coroner pointed out that there was no conclusive evidence to show Teoh had penned the note.
The controversial note caused public uproar after Attorney-General Gani Patail produced it out of the blue and tendered it in court as evidence some 10 months after the inquest started last year. Gani was accused of trying to douse or discredit the evidence due to be presented by Dr Pornthip, who has maintained that Teoh did not commit suicide and the case was a probable homicide.
The A-G's department incurred further controversy when a court-appointed interpreter admitted to using Google Translate to translate the note written in Chinese to Bahasa Malaysia, casting further doubt as to its accuracy.
The Altantuya case is more than just sex and murder. Behind its lurid details are massive corruption on the back of a whopping RM6.7 billion submarines deal involveing both French and Malaysian authorities. On the Malaysian side, it is side to note that no less than Prime Minister Najib Razak has been implicated.
Despite his repeated denials, the number of trails that lead back to him cannot be denied and will continue to puzzle the public until they are fully explained.
The Altantuya-Scorpenes case also highlights the failure of Malaysia's court and legal system, where the ruling elite is still able to influence the course of justice with so much ease and impunity that it is scary.
On Wednesday, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nazri Aziz shocked those who have been following the saga by closing the file on two conflicting statutory declarations made by a private investigator P Balasubramaniam.
By closing the case, Bala's lawyer Americk Sidhu says Najib is trying to halt investigation into the alleged involvement of his brother Nizam, his wife Rosman Mansor, her business associates Deepak Jaikishan, and a few others.
Malaysia Chronicle appends below Balasubramaniam's interview with Malaysia Today when he emerged out of hiding late last year, and the statutory declaration made in 2008 that had for the first time publicly implicated Najib and Rosmah in the Altantuya-Scorpenes case.
According to Bala, Nizam, Rosmah and the Deepak group had offered him RM5 million to retract that damning SD with a second conflicting one, and then leave the country.
November 2009:PI Bala Part 5: ” I was told Rosmah was happy with my retraction”
In the fifth and final part of the mystery interview with private eye P Balasubramaniam published in Malaysia Today, he tells that prime minister’s wife Rosmah Mansor was “very happy” with him for retracting his first statutory declaration which implicated her and Najib Razak in Altantuya’s murder.
He said Rosmah had wanted to have breakfast with him. Balasubramaniam, a central figure in the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder case, also revealed that he had met Najib’s younger brother Nazim the night before signing the second declaration which exonerated Najib and Rosmah. He added that he was only paid RM750,000 of the promised RM5 million for the retraction.
Below are excerpts from the interview.
How long had you known ASP Suresh before this incident?
I have known him for about 10 years. I met him when he was a senior investigation officer at the IPK Kuala Lumpur. I was a private investigator then.
ASP Suresh used to ask me to assist him in obtaining fast traces and details on mobile phones as I had contacts in the phone companies and was able to get the information required faster than the police who had to go through official channels.
At one stage, I was working for ASP Suresh as a bouncer at his pub in Jalan Imbi. He had been suspended from his duties as a police officer sometime in 2006 as he was being investigated for corruption by the ACA.
Had you met Deepak before this incident?
No. But I had done some PI work for his brother Dinesh in the past. I knew Deepak was Dinesh’s brother.
You have said that you met a Malay VIP Datuk outside the Volkswagen showroom at The Curve on the night of July 3rd 2008. Who was this gentleman?
He was Datuk Nazim Razak, the younger brother of Najib. He was there with his pregnant wife. Although I did not speak to her, I recognised her as being a TV personality. I think she was the host on the ‘Nona’ programme. Deepak was the one who brought them there to meet me. That is why ASP Suresh did not want us to meet in a place where there would have been a CCTV camera.
When you were in the Hilton Hotel at KL Sentral with Deepak, Dinesh and ASP Suresh and after you had signed the second statutory declaration, was there anything said to you which you consider to be significant?
Yes, there were two things which Deepak told me. He informed me that Rosmah was very happy with me for retracting my first statutory declaration and wanted to have breakfast with me.
When I enquired from Deepak how long I was expected to leave the country for, he informed me it would be until Najib became the next prime minister and that I could return after that.
When did you contact your lawyer Americk Sidhu?
I called him in the middle of July 2009. I was still in India then. I wanted to arrange a meeting with him to inform him what had happened to me and to apologize for all the trouble I had caused. Americk was in the UK when I called him so we arranged to meet in Kuala Lumpur when he returned at the beginning of August.
Did you meet him?
Yes. We met in early August. At the meeting were two other senior lawyers whom Americk had arranged to be present. I told them everything that had happened to me from the time I left Americk’s office in the evening of the July 3, 2008.
Did you realise that this meeting had been secretly videoed?
I did not realise I was being filmed. I was, however, subsequently informed that a recording had been made and this video is safekeeping. I understand this was done to protect me in the event something untoward happened to me again.
How did you manage to survive financially all the time you were away?
Deepak arranged intermittent payments to be made to me. Some payments were made to my wife directly into her account with the EON Bank in KL.
Other payments were made to ASP Suresh who then arranged payment to me directly or through a friend of mine in Malaysia. I have copies of some of the cheques issued by Deepak Jaikishan and from his company, Carpet Raya Sdn Bhd.
I also have copies of my wife’s bank statements showing the deposits which were made. I also have copies of my HSBC account in Chennai.
How much money did you receive from Deepak from the time you left Malaysia in July 2008 till now?
All together, approximately RM750,000.
Do you have any money left?
Yes, I have invested approximately RM250,000 for my future as I am not sure what will happen to me. I also spent some money on renovations to my house in Rawang as my wife and youngest child were there. These renovations were in respect of the security of my home only.
The rest of the money was spent on renting accommodation in Chennai, paying for my children’s schooling and for daily expenses.
Didn’t Deepak promise you RM5 million?
The negotiations were all conducted by ASP Suresh at the Bak Kut Teh stall in Rawang on the night of the July 3, 2008. I was not involved in these negotiations as I was not concerned about money but the safety of my family.
I have subsequently come to realise that ASP Suresh had a vested interest in all this as I know he has received about the same amount of money from Deepak as I have. His job was to keep me under control. This is why he is annoyed with me for not following his instructions because his income from Deepak would be affected.
Why did you wait so long before revealing all this?
When I was at the Hilton Hotel at KL Sentral, I had asked Deepak how long I would have to stay out of the country. He told me it would have to be until Najib became the prime minister. I could not return to Malaysia before February 2009 as one Kumar had my passport in his possession in India for five months.
I only got my passport back after I complained to Deepak when he visited me in India with ASP Suresh. Deepak called his brother Rajesh to find out what had happened to my passport and within two days Kumar asked me to pick it up from him. I was at this time in India illegally as my visa had expired on September 5, 2008.
In order to get my visa extended I had to seek assistance from my wife’s uncle who is a state exco member in Tamil Nadu who managed to get it extended for one year. Only after this was I able to travel back to Malaysia.
What happened when you arrived back in Malaysia in February 2009?
When I landed in KL, I called Dinesh to inform him I was back in Malaysia. I was summoned to Deepak’s office in Sungai Besi at 11.45 pm the same night and was told in no uncertain terms to leave the country immediately, but I stayed a little longer as I wanted to be with my children and my wife. They didn’t know I had not left immediately.
Why did you come back to Malaysia in April 2009?
Just to see my wife and children. This time I did not tell anyone I was back and so I was not harassed.
Why have you now decided to reveal everything?
Because I want to stop all harassments and so that I can return to my normal life.
Were the contents of your first statutory declaration true?
Were you forced to sign the first statutory declaration under duress?
Were you forced to sign the second statutory declaration under duress?
Yes, because I was fearful for the safety of my family and I did not read the contents of the second statutory declaration before I was asked to sign it.
I, Balasubramaniam a/l Perumal a Malaysian Citizen of full age and residing at [deleted] do solemly and sincerely declare as follows :-
1. I have been a police officer with the Royal Malaysian Police Force having jointed as a constable in 1981 attached to the Police Field Force. I was then promoted to the rank of lance Corporal and finally resigned from the Police Force in 1998 when I was with the Special Branch.
2. I have been working as a free lance Private Investigator since I left the Police Force.
3. Sometime in June or July 2006, I was employed by Abdul Razak Baginda for a period of 10 days to look after him at his office at the Bangunan Getah Asli, Jalan Ampang between the hours of 8.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m each working day as apparently he was experiencing disturbances from a third party.
4. I resigned from this job after 2 ½ days as I was not receiving any proper instructions.
5. I was however re-employed by Abdul Razak Baginda on the 05-10-2006 as he had apparently received a harassing phone call from a Chinese man calling himself ASP Tan who had threatened him to pay his debts. I later found out this gentleman was in fact a private investigator called Ang who was employed by a Mongolian woman called Altantuya Shaaribuu.
6. Abdul Razak Baginda was concerned that a person by the name of Altantuya Shaaribuu, a Mongolian woman, was behind this threat and that she would be arriving in Malaysia very soon to try and contact him.
7. Abdul Razak Baginda informed me that he was concerned by this as he had been advised that Altantuya Shaaribuu had been given some powers by a Mongolian ‘bomoh’ and that he could never look her in the face because of this.
8. When I enquired as to who this Mongolian woman was, Abdul Razak Baginda informed me that she was a friend of his who had been introduced to him by a VIP and who asked him to look after her financially.
9. I advised him to lodge a police report concerning the threatening phone call he had received from the Chinese man known as ASP Tan but he refused to do so as he informed me there were some high profile people involved.
10. Abdul Razak Baginda further told me that Altantuya Shaaribuu was a great liar and good in convincing people. She was supposed to have been very demanding financially and that he had even financed a property for her in Mongolia.
11. Abdul Razak Baginda then let me listen to some voice messages on his handphone asking him to pay what was due otherwise he would be harmed and his daughter harassed.
12. I was therefore supposed to protect his daughter Rowena as well.
13. On the 09.10.2006 I received a phone call from Abdul Razak Baginda at about 9.30 a.m. informing me that Altantuya was in his office and he wanted me there immediately. As I was in the midst of a surveillance, I sent my assistant Suras to Abdul Razak Baginda’s office and I followed a little later. Suras managed to control the situation and had persuaded Altantuya and her two friends to leave the premises. However Altantuya left a note written on some Hotel Malaya note paper, in English, asking Abdul Razak Baginda to call her on her handphone (number given) and wrote down her room number as well.
14. Altantuya had introduced herself to Suras as ‘Aminah’ and had informed Suras she was there to see her boyfriend Abdul Razak Baginda.
15. These 3 Mongolian girls however returned to Abdul Razak Baginda’s office at the Bangunan Getah Asli, Jalan Ampang again, the next day at about 12.00 noon. They did not enter the building but again informed Suras that they wanted to meet Aminah’s boyfriend, Abdul Razak Baginda.
16. On the 11.10.2006, Aminah returned to Abdul Razak Baginda’s office on her own and gave me a note to pass to him, which I did. Abdul Razak Baginda showed me the note which basically asked him to call her urgently.
17. I suggested to Abdul Razak Baginda that perhaps it may be wise to arrange for Aminah to be arrested if she harassed him further, but he declined as he felt she would have to return to Mongolia as soon as her cash ran out.
18. In the meantime I had arranged for Suras to perform surveillance on Hotel Malaya to monitor the movements of these 3 Mongolian girls, but they recognized him. Apparently they become friends with Suras after that and he ended up spending a few nights in their hotel room.
19. When Abdul Razak Baginda discovered Suras was becoming close to Aminah he asked me to pull him out from Hotel Malaya.
20. On the 14.10.2006, Aminah turned up at Abdul Razak Baginda’s house in Damansara Heights when I was not there. Abdul Razak Baginda called me on my handphone to inform me of this so I rushed back to his house. As I arrived, I noticed Aminah outside the front gates shouting “Razak, bastard, come out from the house”. I tried to calm her down but couldn’t so I called the police who arrived in 2 patrol cars. I explained the situation to the police, who took her away to the Brickfields police station.
21. I followed the patrol cars to Brickfields police station in a taxi. I called Abdul Razak Baginda and his lawyer Dirren to lodge a police report but they refused.
22. When I was at the Brickfields police station, Aminah’s own Private Investigator, one Mr. Ang arrived and we had a discussion. I was told to deliver a demand to Abdul Razak Baginda for USD$500,000.00 and 3 tickets to Mongolia, apparently as commission owed to Aminah from a deal in Paris.
23. As Aminah had calmed down at this stage, a policewoman at the Brickfields police station advised me to leave and settle the matter amicably.
24. I duly informed Abdul Razak Baginda of the demands Aminah had made and told him I was disappointed that no one wanted to back me up in lodging a police report. We had a long discussion about the situation when I expressed a desire to pull out of this assignment.
25. During this discussion and in an attempt to persuade me to continue my employment with him, Abdul Razak Baginda informed me that :-
25.1 He had been introduced to Aminah by Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at a diamond exhibition in Singapore.
25.2 Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak informed Abdul Razak Baginda that he had a sexual relationship with Aminah and that [deleted by nat out of respect to the family of the deceased].
25.3 Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak wanted Abdul Razak Baginda to look after Aminah as he did not want her to harass him since he was now the Deputy Prime Minister.
25.4 Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Abdul Razak Baginda and Aminah had all been together at a dinner in Paris.
25.5 Aminah wanted money from him as she felt she was entitled to a USD$500,000.00 commission on a submarine deal she assisted with in Paris.
26. On the 19.10.2006, I arrived at Abdul Razak Baginda’s house in Damansara Heights to begin my night duty. I had parked my car outside as usual. I saw a yellow proton perdana taxi pass by with 3 ladies inside, one of whom was Aminah. The taxi did a U-turn and stopped in front of the house where these ladies rolled down the window and wished me ‘Happy Deepavali’. The taxi then left.
27. About 20 minutes later the taxi returned with only Aminah in it. She got out of the taxi and walked towards me and started talking to me. I sent an SMS to Abdul Razak Baginda informing him “Aminah was here”. I received an SMS from Razak instructing me “To delay her until my man comes”.
28. Whist I was talking to Aminah, she informed me of the following :-
28.1 That she met Abdul Razak Baginda in Singapore with Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
28.2 That she had also met Abdul Razak Baginda and Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at a dinner in Paris.
28.3 That she was promised a sum of USD$500,000.00 as commission for assisting in a Submarine deal in Paris.
28.4 That Abdul Razak Baginda had bought her a house in Mongolia but her brother had refinanced it and she needed money to redeem it.
28.5 That her mother was ill and she needed money to pay for her treatment.
6. That Abdul Razak Baginda had married her in Korea as her mother is Korean whilst her father was a Mongolian/Chinese mix.
28.7 That if I wouldn’t allow her to see Abdul Razak Baginda, would I be able to arrange for her to see Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
29. After talking to Aminah for about 15 minutes, a red proton aeroback arrived with a woman and two men. I now know the woman to be Lance Corporal Rohaniza and the men, Azilah Hadri and Sirul Azahar. They were all in plain clothes. Azilah walked towards me while the other two stayed in the car.
30. Azilah asked me whether the woman was Aminah and I said ‘Yes’. He then walked off and made a few calls on his handphone. After 10 minutes another vehicle, a blue proton saga, driven by a Malay man, passed by slowly. The driver’s window had been wound down and the driver was looking at us.
31. Azilah then informed me they would be taking Aminah away. I informed Aminah they were arresting her. The other two persons then got out of the red proton and exchanged seats so that Lance Corporal Rohaniza and Aminah were in the back while the two men were in the front. They drove off and that is the last I ever saw of Aminah.
32. Abdul Razak Baginda was not at home when all this occurred.
33. After the 19.10.2006, I continued to work for Abdul Razak Baginda at his house in Damansara Heights from 7.00 p.m. to 8.00 a.m. the next morning, as he had been receiving threatening text messages from a woman called ‘Amy’ who was apparently ‘Aminah’s’ cousin in Mongolia.
34. On the night of the 20.10.2006, both of Aminah’s girl friends turned up at Abdul Razak Baginda’s house enquiring where Aminah was. I informed them she had been arrested the night before.
35. A couple of nights later, these two Mongolian girls, Mr. Ang and another Mongolian girl called ‘Amy’ turned up at Abdul Razak Baginda’s house looking for Aminah as they appeared to be convinced she was being held in the house.
36. A commotion began so I called the police who arrived shortly thereafter in a patrol car. Another patrol car arrived a short while later in which was the investigating officer from the Dang Wangi Police Station who was in charge of the missing persons report lodged by one of the Mongolians girls, I believe was Amy.
37. I called Abdul Razak Baginda who was at home to inform him of the events taking place at his front gate. He then called DSP Musa Safri and called me back informing me that Musa Safri would be calling handphone and I was to pass the phone to the Inspector from Dang Wangi Police Station.
38. I then received a call on my handphone from Musa Safri and duly handed the phone to the Dang Wangi Inspector. The conversation lasted 3 – 4 minutes after which he told the girls to disperse and to go to see him the next day.
39. On or about the 24.10.2006, Abdul Razak Baginda instructed me to accompany him to the Brickfields police station as he had been advised to lodge a police report about the harassment he was receiving from these Mongolian girls.
40. Before this, Amy had sent me an SMS informing me she was going to Thailand to lodge a report with the Mongolian consulate there regarding Aminah’s disappearance. Apparently she had sent the same SMS to Abdul Razak Baginda. This is why he told me he had been advised to lodge a police report.
41. Abdul Razak Baginda informed me that DPS Musa Safri had introduced him to one DSP Idris, the head of the Criminal division, Brickfields police station, and that Idris had referred him to ASP Tonny.
42. When Abdul Razak Baginda had lodged his police report at Brickfields police station, in front of ASP Tonny, he was asked to make a statement but he refused as he said he was leaving for overseas. He did however promise to prepare a statement and hand ASP Tonny a thumb drive. I know that this was not done as ASP Tonny told me.
43. However ASP Tonny asked me the next day to provide my statement instead and so I did.
44. I stopped working for Abdul Razak Baginda on the 26.10.2006 as this was the day he left for Hong Kong on his own.
45. In mid November 2006, I received a phone call from ASP Tonny from the IPK Jalan Hang Tuah asking me to see him regarding Aminah’s case. When I arrived there I was immediately arrested under S.506 of the Penal Code for Criminal intimidation.
46. I was then placed in the lock up and remanded for 5 days. On the third day I was released on police bail.
47. At the end of November 2006, the D9 department of the IPK sent a detective to my house to escort me to the IPK Jalan Hang Tuah. When I arrived, I was told I was being arrested under S.302 of the Penal Code for murder. I was put in the lock up and remanded for 7 days.
48. I was transported to Bukit Aman where I was interrogated and questioned about an SMS I had received from Abdul Razak Baginda on the 19.10.2006 which read “delay her until my man arrives”. They had apparently retrieved this message from Abdul Razak Baginda’s handphone.
49. They then proceeded to record my statement from 8.30 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. everyday for 7 consecutive days. I told them all I knew including everything Abdul Razak Baginda and Aminah had told me about their relationships with Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak but when I came to sign my statement, these details had been left out.
50. I have given evidence in the trial of Azilah, Sirul and Abdul Razak Baginda at the Shah Alam High Court. The prosecutor did not ask me any questions in respect of Aminah’s relationship with Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak or of the phone call I received from DSP Musa Safri, whom I believe was the ADC for Datuk Seri Najib Razak and/or his wife.
51. On the day Abdul Razak Baginda was arrested, I was with him at his lawyers office at 6.30 a.m. Abdul Razak Baginda informed us that he had sent Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak an SMS the evening before as he refused to believe he was to be arrested, but had not received a response.
52. Shortly thereafter, at about 7.30 a.m., Abdul Razak Baginda received an SMS from Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and showed, this message to both myself and his lawyer. This message read as follows :- “ I am seeing IGP at 11.00 a.m. today …… matter will be solved … be cool”.
53. I have been made to understand that Abdul Razak Baginda was arrested the same morning at his office in the Bangunan Getah Asli, Jalan Ampang.
54. The purpose of this Statutory declaration is to :-
54.1 State my disappointment at the standard of investigations conducted by the authorities into the circumstances surrounding the murder of Altantuya Shaaribuu.
54.2 Bring to the notice of the relevant authorities the strong possibility that there are individuals other than the 3 accused who must have played a role in the murder of Altantuya Shaaribuu.
54.3 Persuade the relevant authorities to reopen their investigations into this case immediately so that any fresh evidence may be presented to the Court prior to submissions at the end of the prosecutions case.
54.4 Emphasize the fact that having been a member of the Royal Malaysian Police Force for 17 years I am absolutely certain no police officer would shoot someone in the head and blow up their body without receiving specific instructions from their superiors first.
54.5. Express my concern that should the defence not be called in the said murder trial, the accused, Azilah and Sirul will not have to swear on oath and testify as to the instructions they received and from whom they were given.
55. And I make this solemn declaration conscientiously believing the same be true and by virtue of the provisions of the Statutory Declaration Act 1960.
Prime Minister Najib Razak has been slammed for trying to halt a probe into several people including his brother Nizam for forcing private investigator P Balasubramaniam into signing a statutory declaration to overturn an earlier one where Bala had implicated Najib and his wife Rosmah in the murder of Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaarriibuu.
According to Bala’s lawyer Americk Sidhu, the Attorney-General's decision to close the file was aimed at halting embarrassing information from surfacing to implicate Nizam, Rosmah’s business associate Deepak Jaikishan and his brother and a police officer named Inspector Suresh.
This group is believed to have acted with the motive of trying to protect Najib, then the deputy prime minister, and destroy the credibility of the information contained in a previous statutory declaration.
“The A-G can't afford to investigate further as a whole can of worms would be opened up. That is the reason why he AG closed the file,” Americk told Malaysia Chronicle.
“Nothing is going to happen to the culprits because they are all sitting on the correct divide of the political fence. I don't think it is a good outcome. It is another attempt at sweeping stuff under the carpet again. This is something they are experts at.”
Powerful hands behind her killing
The murder of the beautiful 28-year old Altantuya, whom Bala had revealed in his first statutory declaration was Najib’s mistress before he passed her on to his close associate Razak Baginda, has gripped Malaysians for years now.
She was killed in a remote jungle clearing in Selangor in 2006 in a most horrific way. Despite telling her killers she was pregnant, two of Najib’s former bodyguards shot her in the head and blew her body with C4 explosives to prevent identification.
Months after the discovery of her body, rumors began circulating of powerful hands behind her killing. Altantuya, who speaks four languages including Russian and French, had played a role in helping Razak Baginda close a multi-billion ringgit submarines purchase for Najib, who was then the Defense minister.
Bala had been hired by Razak Baginda to stop Altantuya from harassing him for what she had said was her share of the submarines commission paid by French vendor DCNS. It amounted to US$500,000 while Baginda’s firm was allegedly benefitted with a 214 million euros side-deal.
In 2008, after harassment over his police statement which had contained some of these details, Bala decided to blow the whistle. With the help of his lawyers, he made a statutory declaration detailing all the information that had come to his hand while working for Baginda.
Why weren't Nizam, Deepak and the rest investigated
It was the first time that Najib and Rosmah were publicly implicated in the muder although speculation of their involvement had already been circulating round the country for more than a year.
But within 24 hours of the release of Bala’s statutory declaration, he was forced to issue a second one to retract the first. He then fled Malaysia with his family, only to resurface in late 2009, where he said in an interview recorded on video that it was Nizam and the other people in the group who had forced him to issue the second declaration.
Greed behind the Scopenes deal led to the murder and graft
Several police complaints were lodged and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission was tasked to investigate Nizam and the others for having allegedly bribed and intimidated Bala into signing the second statutory declaration.
Earlier this year, the MACC made a half-hearted attempt to go after Bala but at the 11th hour cancelled a meeting with him in London. Although Najib’s minders rushed to defend the MACC's withdrawal, it was clear the agency had been instructed by powerful people to stop digging - lest the dirt they found became uncontainable.
“Have the police investigated the culprits who threatened Bala to retract his first SD -Deepak and his brother, Inspector Suresh, Nizam Razak, Rosmah Mansor and the Military Intelligence?” asked Americk.
“If they had, this file certainly would not be closed. If they had done their job properly all the above named persons, including Bala's 'lawyer' Arunampalam (who drew up the second SD) would be in the dock being charged for a variety of offences.”
Americk was responding to Nazri Aziz, the Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, who announced on Wednesday that the government would be closing the file on the two "conflicting" SDs.
"Although there are contradictions between the two statutory declarations, it did not at all affect the Altantuya trial. Moreoever, it is believed that the individual (Balasubramaniam) is still abroad," Mohd Nazri had said in a written reply to question posed in Parliament about the status of the government's probe.
Najib's two former bodyguards have been sentenced to hang but the obvious question remains unanswered, who ordered the murder?
Malaysia Chronicle appends below a copy of the police complaint lodged by Americk on July 8, 2008 after the second Statutory Declaration emerged. .
I, AMERICK SINGH SIDHU NRIC NO 561129-71-5251 hereby lodge the following complaint :
(1) I am practising as an Advocate and Solicitor in Malaysia.
(2) I was instructed by one Mr Balasubramaniam a/l Perumal ( NRIC NO 600928-08-6235 ) in respect of documenting the facts and circumstances involving him in the Altantunya matter.
(3) This led to the affirmation of a Statutory Declaration by Mr. Balasubramaniam on 01.07.2008 . The affirmation of the said Statutory Declaration was done in my presence and I have personal knowledge of the facts and circumstances leading to the production and affirmation of the said Statutory Declaration dated 01.07.2008 .
(4) Mr Balasubramaniam a/l Perumal held a Press Conference on the 04.07.2008. I am informed by media reports that another Statutory Declaration affirmed by Mr. Balasubramaniam and dated 04.07.2008 was made public on that day. The contents of the said 04.07.2008 Statutory Declaration suggests that the earlier Statutory Declaration dated 01.07.2008 was made ‘ under duress ‘.
(5) I acted in good faith in documenting the facts that led to the production and affirmation of the Statutory Declaration dated 01.07.2008 and i am satisfied it was made voluntarily and without any duress whatsoever.
(6) By reason of the matters stated above , I have reasonable grounds to believe that the second Statutory Declaration dated 04.07.2008 is suspicious on the face of it . The said document’s contents amount to criminal defamation of my character both personal and professional. I strongly believe person and or persons have induced , threatened and caused the production of the 04.07.2008 Statutory Declaration by unlawful conduct.
(7) I request that an investigation be carried out to ascertain the person and or persons who unlawfully caused the said Mr Balasubramaniam a/l Perumal to state that the earlier Statutory Declaration dated 01.07.2008, which was made in my presence, was made under duress. I believe the offence of criminal conspiracy to cause criminal defamation would have been committed by this and/ or these persons.
(Asia Sentinel) EU-India summit in December presents an opportunity for improving ties
When Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh travels to Europe in early December for the 11th European Union-India summit, he should be hoping that relations between the two are nowhere as frigid as the winter in some parts of Europe. Although India and the EU share many common traits including strong and robust democracies, multiculturalism, a free press and judiciary, belief in secularism and human rights, they seem to have missed the bus when it comes to their overall ties.
In the years after India's independence, the EU and India had differing viewpoints on their respective roles in the world. India preferred to remain non-aligned, although its close ties with the erstwhile Soviet Union were not to the liking of many European nations. However, the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union, accompanied by India's economic reforms, ensured a gradual shift in the way the EU and India have perceived and dealt with each other.
While the ties hark back to the early 1960s, with India being one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with the then-European Economic Community (EEC), it was a 1994 co-operation agreement between the EU and India which took the bilateral relations to a different level.
The Lisbon Summit in June 2000 marked the beginning of the EU-India Summits. A major landmark in the relations was the 2004 EU-India Summit in The Hague which endorsed the proposal to upgrade the EU-India relationship to the level of a "Strategic Partnership".
In 2005, a Joint Action Plan was launched at the Sixth EU-India Summit to implement the EU-India Strategic Partnership. This committed the EU and India to strengthening dialogue and consultation mechanisms, deepening political dialogue and co-operation in areas such as pluralism and diversity; democracy and human rights; peace-building and post-conflict assistance; nuclear non-proliferation; and the fight against terrorism and organised crime.
The EU Country Strategy Paper for India (2007-13) lists EU's priority areas in India. The first aim is to assist India in meeting the Millennium Development Goals by providing budget support to the social sector which includes areas like health, education, governance, decentralised decision-making and development, among others.
The second aim is to implement the EU-India Partnership with a view to supporting India's reform policies, promoting dialogue in areas of mutual interest and enhancing economic ties.
Terrorism is a common area of concern for both. The 2009 EU-India Summit reaffirmed the need for co-operation for combating the scourge of international terrorism. The EU is also India's largest trading partner. Trade levels have increased over the last few years. In 2008, the trade in goods and services between the EU and India was almost €80 billion.
However, there are a few problem areas as well. First, Indian foreign policy has tended to traditionally concentrate on four large member states of the EU -- France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Italy. Indian policy makers need to make an extra effort to build up linkages with the new member countries.
Second, the EU has not spoken in one voice regarding India's aspiration for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council. One of the reasons could be that Germany also covets a seat, which puts its interests at odds with that of India.
Third, with the US and the NATO forces already on the lookout for an exit strategy in Afghanistan, Indian officials are worried as to the grave implications it would have for security in the region, especially India's security, particularly because the idea of negotiating with the "good Taliban" put forward by the US and some of the European nations is a frightening prospect for India.
Fourth, India has also been upset by what it sees as "European interference" in India's internal matters such as human rights issues, Kashmir, child labor and the 2002 Gujarat communal riots.
Fifth, there have been differences on the issue of the signing of the long negotiated India-European Union Free Trade Agreement (FTA). These issues include public procurement and the list of sensitive items which are delaying the process and it is not unlikely to be signed during the Indian PM's visit to Europe in December this year.
The US visit
When President Barack Obama lands in India early next month, he is expected to reemphasise the importance of India in the American strategic matrix. His predecessor George Bush ended India's nuclear isolation and co-opted India as a partner in shaping a new world order, keeping in mind India's growing stature in the international arena. Just as the US has been willing to bend the rules with respect to India, the EU would do well to take into account the rise of India while framing its policies towards the country.
The EU can benefit from India's highly qualified technical manpower while India can benefit from technological assistance from the EU in niche areas including nuclear energy. In fact, a shift to nuclear energy would also help India to cut down on its emissions, something which the EU countries would like India to do.
Steps should also be taken for greater interaction between the academia, think-tanks, non-governmental organisations and the fourth estate in India and the EU, so that the ties between the two are not only dependent on official ties.
Both India and the EU need to put in the extra effort to see that the relations between the two reach their full potential. Given the immense potential of the relationship, the upcoming summit is an opportunity that both sides can ill afford to squander.
Rupakjyoti Borah is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Geopolitics and International Relations, Manipal University, Karnataka, India.
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 5 (Bernama) -- Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak described the Barisan Nasional victories in the by-elections for the Galas state seat and Batu Sapi Parliamentary seat Thursday as a reflection of the people's confidence in the BN government.
"This is particularly true in the context of transformation that is being championed by the BN government with the tabling of detailed and thorough plans," the Prime Minister told Bernama by telephone, here Thursday night.
Najib, who is currently on leave after contracting chicken pox, said he was very happy with the victories and described them as a victory for the people and voters in the two constituencies.
"They have placed their trust and confidence in the BN to bring progress and better prosperity to the residents in Batu Sapi and Galas.
"I give my assurance that the BN pledges in Galas and Batu Sapi will be fulfilled," he said when commenting on the success of the BN in defending Batu Sapi with a bigger majority, and recapturing Galas from PAS.
Najib, who is also the BN chairman, said: "I hope the win would be a new indicator that the BN recovery process has reached a meaningful level. We will not consider that the process has ended."
"This process is a new journey to give confidence that the BN is on the right track to take a more positive step," he said.
He said that by making changes on a continuous basis, BN would become a party that received strong support.
Najib also recorded his thanks to the BN machinery led by his deputy Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
He thanked the Gua Musang Member of Parliament, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah who is also the Gua Musang Umno division head for being the director of the BN election machinery in Galas and the Sabah Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Musa Aman for leading the BN election machinery in Batu Sapi.
Najib also thanked Kelantan Umno Liaison chairman Datuk Mustapa Mohamed and Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan who had workd hard in Galas and Batu Sapi respectively.
"Everyone had shown a strong team spirit for the victory despite facing very tough fight," he added.
SANDAKAN, Nov 4 (Bernama) -- Shy and gentle housewife Datin Linda Tsen Thau Lin turned giant killer when she trounced two political heavyweights in the Batu Sapi parliamentary seat by-election, here Thursday.
Tsen, the widow of incumbent MP Datuk Edmund Chong Ket Wah and was also Barisan Nasional's (BN) choice in the by-election, was happy with her victory, yet had mixed feelings at the same time.
"I am happy but I also have mixed feelings because I miss my husband," she said when met after being announced the new Batu Sapi member of parliament at the Sandakan Community Hall, here, where the votes were tallied.
Tsen won with a 6,359-vote majority, garnering 9,773 votes against 3,414 obtained by Parti Keadilan Rakyat's (PKR) Ansari Abdullah and 2,031 by Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) president Datuk Yong Teck Lee.
The by-election was held following Chong's death in a road accident on Oct 9.
The mother of four aged 13 to 23 was excited to go back into the arms of her children after 10 days of campaigning.
"The first thing I want to do is to go back and see my children because I have been away from them for so long and I miss them very much," she said.
Tsen also said she would be going to each area in her constituency and see what she could do for the people.
"I will try my best and I will work hard, of course.
"And as a new MP, there is a lot I have to learn. So, please give me a chance," she said.
Meanwhile, Ansari was not surprised with the outcome of the by-election.
"I said before that PKR would not win. But we would not be in third place," he said.
He claimed that BN's win was driven by corruption during the campaign period where PKR had lodged police reports on several of BN's wrongdoings.
"But until now there has been no action taken by the police or the Election Commission," he said.
Yong said the election was an exercise for SAPP to prepare for the next general election.
"SAPP is resilient. When we fall, we always get up again. And then we will fight and fight until we win and achieve autonomy for Sabah," he said.
Despite losing and coming in last in the contest, Yong said SAPP would be holding a thanksgiving ceremony for their hardwork.
Yong also congratulated Tsen for her victory and wished her the best of luck in serving and fulfilling the wishes of the Batu Sapi people.
The Malaysian Bar calls on the Sarawak State Government to immediately rescind the entry ban from entering the state of Sarawak currently imposed upon Jannie Lasimbang, one of Malaysia’s Human Rights Commissioners.
The fact that a Commissioner of Malaysia’s Human Rights Commission (Suruhanjaya Hak Asasi Manusia Malaysia, or “SUHAKAM”), is denied entry into Sarawak is, in principle, quite wrong. There should not be any “no go” areas for SUHAKAM. The Federal Government, in exercising its rights under the Federal Constitution, has made a federal law to establish SUHAKAM and to define its terms of reference and scope of powers.
The entry ban is a negative development, and one that Malaysia can ill afford. It is happening at a time when SUHAKAM is once again coming under the scrutiny of the Sub-Committee on Accreditation of the International Coordinating Committee of National Human Rights Institutions. SUHAKAM’s continuing “A” status is already in jeopardy, and the restrictions faced by Jannie Lasimbang may well kick SUHAKAM out of the “A” status league.
Malaysia is being closely observed by the international community for the manner in which the government is handling the issue of indigenous peoples’ rights and land reform. Great focus has already been concentrated on Sarawak, what with the issue of the Penans, the illegal logging of native customary land, and other encroachment on the rights of the Orang Asal there.
As one of the four persons who constitute the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council, Jannie Lasimbang’s proven expertise in the area of indigenous people’s rights and land reform would have lent weight and credibility to the comprehensive national enquiry SUHAKAM was planning to undertake in this regard. The continued intransigence of the Sarawak State Government can only have a detrimental effect on the issue of Orang Asli/Orang Asal rights and on the orderly and positive development of human rights in our country.