April 4, 2016
Najib’s Bunglers are hurting him
by Scott Ng
Najib’s No. 1
UMNO Supreme Council member Tajuddin Abdul Rahman is making a name for himself as one of Prime Minister Najib Razak’s fiercest defenders. Tajuddin wants you to know that Najib has a good reason for spending a lot of money on his wife, Rosmah Mansor. It’s because it makes her happy, he says.
Just like any married man out there, the PM wants to impress the missus and, according to Tajuddin, giving her handbags is an important part of the process of wooing your lady. He says it is especially acceptable for the PM to do this because, as a high-ranking public official, he can afford it.
No one would disagree that there is no problem with pampering your lady within your means. But the key phrase here is “within your means”. Now, it has been alleged that Rosmah loves Birkin bags. One of those can cost anything from RM40,000 to RM1 million. The Prime Minister’s salary, on record, is RM22,825.65 a month, though his actual income is likely far higher, given the allowances our government officials are paid. Whether it is within Najib’s means to buy Birkin bags is a conclusion for someone else to draw.
Mohamed Rahmat’s Son
We are not saying that Najib actually buys Birkin bags for Rosmah. All we’re doing is analysing Tajuddin’s statement. It is important to note that Tajuddin was responding to allegations made in the ABC’s Four Corners report on Malaysia. It said the PM used credit cards to spend millions buying jewellery for Rosmah. It also alleged that Najib had received tons of money from dubious sources, not just from Saudi royalty.
If Tajuddin had been a dependable defender of his boss, he would have done some research so he could shoot holes into the allegations. Instead, all he has succeeded in doing is to embarrass the PM further. His so-called defence of Najib raises eyebrows so high that they disappear into our hair.
Yet Another UMNO Bungler
Certainly, Tajuddin is not the only bungler among the PM’s men. The confusing narrative that we’ve been given threatens to derail any attempt at defending Najib. The defenders are out in full force, and they are saying different things. One insists that the Four Corners report is one-sided and inaccurate, and another tacitly admits that it got some things right.
The more Tajuddin and his fellow defenders talk, the shakier the ground the government stands on looks.