RM2.6 billion in Prime Minister Najib Razak’s Personal Bank Accounts is Corrupt Money


August 3, 2015

Malaysia: RM2.6 billion in Prime Minister’s Personal Bank  Accounts is Corrupt Money

by Din Merican

Corrupt rm2.6 billion

As reward for supporting beleaguered Prime Minister Najib Razak, the new Cabinet appointees, especially Rahman Dahlan and Azalina Othman are posturing, as a mark of gratitude, with ridiculous ideas that are not only perverse but also blatantly mocking of the whole purpose of preventing corruption.

azalinaAzalina

Rahman and Azalina are now defending the secret huge sums of RM2.6billion found in the Prime Minister’s personal bank accounts as political funding and that Prime Minister Najib is holding the sludge fund as a trustee o‎f UMNO.  It is unbelievable that they can come up with such a spin.

The argument is perverse in its logic of defending the indefensible, because it is  flawed in facts:

a) UMNO is a registered political organisation. Its accounts must be duly accounted for to the Registar of Societies. This was not done until the account was closed. Just check with the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM);

b) if the money is held as a trustee for UMNO, how come this trust account is unknown to UMNO itself that is the Deputy President and Supreme Council‎ are unaware of it until Rahman and Azalina raised this excuse that it is a political trust  fund in the Prime Minister’s name. If so, was there a trust document; was it discussed when it was created and disbursed by approval at any Supreme Council meeting? and

c) ‎if it is political donation, how come Prime Minister Najib has such difficulties to be open and transparent about it and has been unable to give us straight answers. His answers so far are wishy-washy not in the manner now argued by Rahman and Azalina.

Rahman-Dahlan-Clare-Rewcastle-BrownRahman Dahlan

Let us be very clear, money kept in secretive ways is a red flag that it is for an improper corrupt purpose. Now let us deal with the legal issue which will show that Rahman and Azalina ‎are propagating views  which are totally contrary to the provisions of the MACC Act, 2009.

Section 3 (S.3)

S.3 of the MACC Act  defines Prime Minister Najib, Rahman, Azalina, 4 Public Accounts Committee (PAC) members, all the cabinet members and all parliamentarians as “officers of a public body” by virtue of them being “members of the ‎administration” or “members of State Legislative Assembly” or “officers of Government  of Malaysia or Government of a State”. They are all prohibited from receiving any form of gratification.

Gratification has a long definition to include not just money but also donation, gift, loan, fee, office, post, dignity, employment, contracts, service, forbearance, protection.

Section 50 (S.50)

S.50 of the MACC Act clearly states that anyone of these officers of public body who gives or receives gratification is presumed to have ‎done so corruptly.

 Section 16 (S.16)

S.16 of the MACC Act provides that any of them who gives or receives corrupt gratification commits an offence punishable by 20 years’ imprisonment.

Thus:

a) Prime Minister Najib who received the secret fund has committed an offence of corruption;

b) Prime Minister Najib who offered cabinet posts to the 4 Public Accounts Committee (PAC) members to disrupt their duty from reporting to Parliament on the Auditor-General’s report commits not only obstruction of justice but also corruption by offering them  cabinet posts so that they forbear reporting negatively against him in their PAC report;

c) The 4 PAC members who abandoned their duty in the PAC have not only betrayed their duty to report to Parliament but also created a conflict of interest whereby they now have information that they can use to protect the Prime Minister, and by accepting to be cabinet members have also committed the offence of corruption;

d) Rahman, Azalina, the other cabinet members and all the UMNO Supreme Council‎ members who are aware of the now admitted “slush fund” have also committed abetment of the corruption.

That is what the law says.

Thus, Rahman and Azalina whose oath of office as Parliamentarians and as Ministers have breached their oaths of office by saying something contrary to the law. They have, in fact, encouraged the public and the Malaysian masses to breach the law. They should be hauled up by the MACC.

No Excuse for Committing Corruption

If guidance from history is needed that there is no excuse for committing corruption, just read this passage on the conviction of Dato’Harun Idris who was once a hero of the Malays. Tun Razak may also be a hero. But, make no mistake, Najib is not.

Just look at all his policies that are causing endless  miseries not only to the rakyat but also to the future generations when they will have to pay for the crimes committed today.

A Footnote in History per Almarhum Sultan Azlan Shah, when sentencing Allahyarham (Dato’) Harun Idris for corruption in 1976:

” It is painful for me to have to sentence a man I know. I wish it were the duty of some other judge to perform that task. To me this hearing seems to reaffirm the vitality of the Rule of Law. But to many of us, this hearing also suggests a frightening decay in the integrity of some of our leaders. It has given horrible illustrations of Lord Acton’s aphorism “power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely”, and has focused concern on the need of some avowed limitations upon political authority.

“…the law is no respecter of persons. Nevertheless it will be impossible to ignore the fact that you are in a different category from any person that I have ever tried. It would be impossible to ignore the fact that, in the eyes of millions of our countrymen and women, you are a patriot and a leader. Even those who differ from you in politics look upon you as a man of high ideals. You had every chance to reach the greatest height of human achievement. But half-way along the road, you allowed avarice to corrupt you.

“It is incomprehensible how a man in your position could not in your own conscience, recognise corruption for what it is. In so doing, you have not only betrayed your party cause, for which you have spoken so eloquently, but also the oath of office which you have taken and subscribed before your Sovereign Ruler, and above all the law of which you are its servant”.

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Najib Razak’s Cabinet–Hududism on the Way


August 2, 2015

Listen to Ambiga on kiniTv: PM gone crazy

Malaysia: More on Najib Razak’s Cabinet–Hududism on the Way

by AR Zurairi@www.malaymailone.com

Najib on HududA Hudud Prime Minister

A Cabinet reshuffle is not about dropping ministers who have underperformed or are unpopular with the public, at least not in Malaysia.

If that were true, then we would not still be seeing former Deputy Finance Minister Ahmad Maslan around after the massive kerfuffle with the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax.

Ahmad MaslanHigh GPA Minister

Instead he is now the Deputy International Trade and industry minister, with perhaps a role in the handling of the hot potato that is the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

And we would not still see Ismail Sabri Yaakob, not after his call to boycott Chinese traders in February. And then, you have Jamil Khir Baharom, whose tenure as a minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Islamic affairs has been nothing but horrendous with regards to the rights and civil liberties of not only non-Muslims, but some in the Muslim community themselves.

Datuk-Jamil-Khir-BaharomLaksamana (Admiral) al-Hudud

The past few years have seen the divide between Muslims and others grow even wider as Islamic authorities gain the upper hand in determining the country’s policies and undermining the Federal Constitution.

Under Jamil, Islamic authorities — either federal or state — have only grown bolder in encroaching more into Malaysian lives with impunity and without rebuke.

State religious authorities have several times, in court and usually in judicial reviews, insisted that the Shariah court has jurisdiction over civil courts, and Shariah laws should not be subjected to the provisions in the Constitution.

Jamil himself has even alleged a “new wave” of assault on Islam here, accusing human rights activists of colluding with enemies of Islam to put its religious institutions on trial in a secular court.

Instead, Jamil now has a Deputy minister in the form of Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki, the UMNO senator more popularly known as the head of Muslim missionary group Yayasan Dakwah Islamiah Malaysia (YADIM).

Judging from his track record, Asyraf is a perfect fit for Jamil, and we can expect more of the same from our Islamic authorities.

In 2013, Asyraf was among the speakers of the Symposium on Facing Foreign Agenda with the theme “Malay Leadership Crisis”, jointly organised by Islamist group Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia and its student wing Pembina, where he urged Muslims to always prioritise their own rights over the non-Muslims.

More recently, his antics as a senator included suggesting in Dewan Negara that 24-hour eateries could be the cause of “social problems”, claiming no such outlets are available in developed countries.

But most of all, the Tumpat-born Asyraf is a vocal proponent of implementing the controversial Islamic penal code of hudud across the country, and he seems to have a clearer vision of it than Jamil.

Last year, YADIM organised a conference compiling working papers on implementing hudud from Muslim academics nationwide. The compilation was edited into a book by Asyraf and it was launched earlier this year.

Among those who submitted papers were former Chief Justice Abdul Hamid Mohamad, and Perlis mufti Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin. But there were also PAS Ulama wing chief Dr Mahfodz Mohamed, Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali who was then the wing’s information chief, and Kelantan exco member Dr Mohamed Fadzli Hassan, also from PAS.

The conclusion from the papers had been that it is not impossible for hudud to be implemented in the country, but it takes a bipartisan effort that puts Islam above all other considerations.

When met after the book launch, Khairuddin had coyly said this consensus on hudud is not a collaboration between UMNO and PAS, but rather a government-to-government deal between Putrajaya and Kelantan.

It has since been a tug-of-war between the two political parties. Ever since Kelantan passed an amendment to its Shariah Criminal Enactment to pave way for hudud, PAS President Abdul Hadi Awang has been trying to table private members’ Bills to clear any legal obstacles.

Even though Jamil had said that Putrajaya and UMNO have no qualms implementing hudud, he has stopped short of suggesting anything concrete. Hadi’s Bills have so far been put on the backburner in two previous Parliament sittings.

It has been suggested that the failure of PAS to push for hudud has been its recent haste in doing so, ignoring the blueprint allegedly drawn by Putrajaya to implement hudud in the country.

The paper, said to be prepared by a Shariah-Civil Technical Committee under JAKIM, the federal Islamic authority under Jamil, had concluded that the Constitution does not bar the incorporation of hudud into the Penal Code and its subsequent application to all Malaysians, not just Muslims.

It also stated it was vital for all local laws to be harmonised with Islamic principles.

Of course, the blueprint went out of the window after it was leaked to the public, and PAS meanwhile went ahead with its hudud plan in Kelantan to advance its credibility with its supporters prior to its annual congress and internal polls.

The move had arguably forced DAP’s hand which led to Pakatan Rakyat’s death, and also PAS’ progressive leaders in Harapan Baru which are now finalising plans for a new Islamic party.

With DAP and its progressive leaders out of the picture, and PAS going it mostly alone, its hudud goals might get a new life.And now PAS, and its clergy faction which took over the party, has one more ally in a high place: the now Deputy Minister Asyraf.

With UMNO grasping for support amid its fractious power struggle, will we see this alliance lead to a rekindling of the PAS-UMNO “friendship”?

“What is the most important is to ensure the agenda involving hudud can be realised, God willing,” Asyraf said in a status update on his official Facebook page on Wednesday following his appointment. With his newfound power, Asyraf now has carte blanche to realise this hudud ambition.

Malaysia: Prime Minister Najib Razak’s Defence Game


August 2, 2015

Malaysia: Malaysian PM’s Successful Defensive Game

by John Berthelsen@www.asiasentinel.com

Najib-Razak-david-_3392712bNajib Razak got a message on Corruption from David Cameron

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has played a deft defensive game to keep his job in the face of what ought to be overwhelming forces to remove him. He has fired enemies, co-opted others and muzzled  the press.

That leaves only a handful who may stand in his way including Zeti Akhtar Aziz, the central banker, who is said to be under enormous pressure but who has access to incriminating bank records on both Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor. The other is Ahmad Hamdan Dahlan, the chief of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, who has remained silent on which way the commission may go. There are rumors in Kuala Lumpur that he may be the next to get the boot.

Political analysts now are trying to assess new damage from an explosive account in the UK-based Sarawak Report that published what are purported to be drafts of corruption charges to be brought by Malaysian former Attorney General Abdul Gani Patail, who was fired on July 28, and shunted into a make-work position. Rumors of Gani Patail’s decision to charge the prime minister circulated well before he was sacked.

Scandal and tumult

That was only the latest in a tumultuous week in Kuala Lumpur. For more than a  year, Najib has been ensnared in one of the biggest financial scandals in recent history.  But despite the ostensible damage, he is expected to survive, at least for now, partly because there is nobody around with the power to topple him. Even if the opposition were to somehow pull back together, he seems safe from a no-confidence motion in the Parliament and has until 2018 to regroup for the next general election.

While the economy may be more decisive in determining the outcome of the next general election, analysts expect the political cauldron to continue to bubble for the next two years, unless something unseen breaks. It is hard to see what that might be given the peculiar nature of Malaysian politics, as ethnic Malays, who make up 60 percent of the country, regard UMNO as their defender against the Chinese, who occupy the economic heights.  To many the continuing attacks on Najib and UMNO represent a threat against their guardian.

Over the years Najib has survived being caught in a Port Dickson motel room bed with an actress, being investigated by French prosecutors for taking a €114 million kickback on the purchase of submarines as Defense Minister and overpaying by a vast amount on the purchase of a wide range of other military weapons that probably resulted in kickbacks.

In the current episode, the Premier has muzzled the most influential business newspapers in the country and left those owned by the political parties, including UMNO’s vitriolic Utusan Malaysia, the Malay-language broadsheet, to blast opponents as agents of foreign powers. The English-language New Straits Times and Star have been content to largely parrot the government  line.

By firing Akhil Bulat, the head of Special Branch, Najib has pushed out what amounts to the police intelligence chief and the man who knows where the bodies are buried. Bulat, a source told Asia Sentinel, has grown increasingly critical of Najib in private circles, saying he has to go.

The most potent threat, beyond the Bank Negara documents, is the long-running and often-delayed investigation by the parliament’s Public Accounts Committee into the affairs of the troubled 1Malaysia Development Bhd. Najib has addressed that by appointing four UMNO members of the committee to cabinet positions when he reshuffled the cabinet and ousted his critics. The chairman, Nur Jazlan Mohamed, has been named Deputy Home Minister.

Nur JazlanLoyalty over Duty=Promotion=Loss of Dignity

While opposition members of the bipartisan committee have vowed to continue their work, other observers believe it has been effectively neutered, at least for now.

Whether or not Najib retains the loyalty of the 190-odd United Malays Organization district chiefs, he has neutered opposition there as well by pushing intra-party elections back by 18 months so that even if his enemies, including former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad could generate party support, it doesn’t appear that anybody can get at him. But pushing the elections back cuts both ways. Najib can’t be ousted but neither can Muhyiddin Yassin, fired as Deputy Prime Minister early this week, be sacked as Deputy President.

Najib also endured a tongue-lashing this week from British Prime Minister David Cameron, who had the ill timing to land in Kuala Lumpur to peddle trade as the scandal blew open. The British premier skulked out of town as quickly as he could. It was hardly the reflected prestige that Najib was counting on to boost his street cred.

Deflect the bad news

As Najib’s supporters have done since the scandal blew open months ago, they sought to deflect the latest salvo by Sarawak Report, saying unnamed forces want to end parliamentary democracy in Malaysia. Apandi Ali, the new attorney general, who was appointed the same day Gani Patail was removed, said the documents were part of a “conspiracy to topple a serving prime minister” and a “threat to Malaysia’s democracy.”

Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the nakedly ambitious and often mercurial deputy prime minister picked to replace Muhyiddin, and Inspector General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar, went on the opposition against crusading Sarawak Report editor Clare  Rewcastle Brown, saying sedition charges are likely to be brought against her, a hollow charge since she operates in the UK, which is not about to bend to already-existing demands to extradite her. For weeks, forces believed to be paid by middle eastern oil interests have staged an all-out campaign to discredit Rewcastle Brown, stalking her in London to photograph people she meets and charging they are part of the conspiracy.  They paid a former Sarawak Radio official to accuse her of altering documents to discredit 1MDB.

In the latest case, Rewcastle Brown said she had verified the documents with senior officials before printing them. Gani Patail has been silent on it. One presumes he would denounce the documents if they were fake.

Americk Sidhu, a Kuala Lumpur-based lawyer, went to bat for the documents. “The way those charge sheets are drafted indicates the person tasked with that job knew what he was doing,” Sidhu said. “There is a complex legal structure to both charges (in the alternative) which any layman would not be able to understand or even appreciate. The details are also too intricate to be made up. Remember these were still drafts. The final product would have been a little different but the substance would remain.”

The draft also contains a police report, on which the draft charge would have been based. “I have seen charge sheets before,” Sidhu said. “They look like this.” The documents indicate Gani Patail was about to charge Najib and a company director of the controversial state-backed 1Malasia Development Bhd with corrupt practices under Section 17 (a) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act, with the potential of up to 20 years in prison.

Do average voters care?

But Najib remains insulated from rank and file voters.  “IMDB is too complicated for the average Malaysian,” said a veteran think tanker, who pointed out that a decision to impose a goods and services tax in April has been hugely unpopular. 

“What the average Malaysian thinks is this – I have to pay GST because IMDB owes RM42 billion, can’t pay its loans and has to be bailed out by the government. Other missteps by government – petrol prices raised BEFORE [Ramadan]. Think of the impact on all those in the kampungs.  Consumer spending is down this year.”

The business community and the economy are being hit hard.  The ringgit, the Malaysian unit of currency, has fallen more than any other in Southeast Asia. Malaysian Industrial Finance  has reported that so far in 2015 nearly RM10 billion net has flowed out from the stock market after another RM6 billion plus in 2014.

He still faces opposition from Muhyiddin and Mahathir as well. Muhyiddin is still UMNO Deputy President despite having been sacked as Deputy Prime Minister. He retains considerable power in the southern state of Johor, an UMNO bastion.

“Now freed from government work, Muhyiddin can visit UMNO branches to canvas for support. He also has very, very well-heeled supporters, “said the think tank  operative. In particular, the Tunku Makhota, Johor’s crown prince recently attacked the handling of the scandal only to have UMNO figures lash out at him. That in turn earned the critics an investigation for insulting the Johor monarchy, further splitting the party in the state.

“I think Najib made a mistake in sacking Muhyiddin,” the think tank official said. “Sacking him will prompt Muhyiddin to go for broke. I think a better strategy would have been to allow Muhyiddin to remain as DPM but give him an inconsequential portfolio.”

Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamid–Jocelyn Tan’s Positive Spin for Najib Razak


August 2, 2015

Malaysia:  Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Zahid Hamid- The Positive Spin for  Najib Razak

by Jocelyn Tan@www.thestar.com.my

ahmad_zahid

IT was late afternoon by the time the Prime Minister showed up at Datuk Seri Shahrizat Jalil’s Hari Raya open house in Damansara Heights. It was still crowded because many of the guests had lingered on when they heard that Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was coming.

Najib often wears red for Wanita UMNO dos and he stood out in his crimson batik shirt. His face seemed rather flushed although the day had cooled down and someone joked that it must be the political temperature out there.

It had been a super stressful day – he had just sacked Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and also brought the axe down on long-time loyalist Dato’ Seri Shafie Apdal, who had turned against him.

The last time something like this happened in UMNO was when Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad sacked Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim from the Cabinet and party.It was big time politics and the first thought that crossed the minds of many was that Najib had “done a Mahathir” or as a former UMNO Youth leader put it, Najib had taken a leaf from Mahathir’s playbook.

The ripples from the Cabinet reshuffle have yet to subside. After all, Muhyiddin is UMNO Deputy President and Shafie is one of three Vice-Presidents.

About half an hour after Najib and his wife arrived at Shahrizat’s house, the new Deputy Prime Minister and his wife arrived. It was one of those moments – everyone wanted a piece of Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The presence of the top two was not purely social. The pair were sending an important signal that Shahrizat, the leader of the backbone of the party, is with them. The timing could not have been better.The new No.2 had also had a stressful day, but it was a happy type of stress and some said he was smiling non-stop.

Actually, Dr Ahmad Zahid is one of those natural smilers whose face crinkles up whenever he smiles. The Prime Minister had indicated to him a day earlier but still, he felt rather overwhelmed when it finally happened.

He is the new flavour of the month and everywhere he goes, there are cameras clicking away.

Dr Ahmad Zahid has had a tough guy reputation ever since he took on the Home Ministry job. He has managed to clamp down on organised crime and is popular among the police force. But behind that likeable smile is a rather jantan (masculine) personality and you really do not want to get on his wrong side.

But his image within UMNO is quite different. The UMNO crowd sees him as a people’s politician, someone who is completely without airs and whom the common folk relate to.

His handshakes are firm, he looks people in the eye and he does not hesitate to give friends and long-time associates man hugs. Once, when he met PAS President Datuk Seri Hadi Awang in Mecca, political rivalry was pushed aside and Muslim brotherhood kicked in. He wrapped his arms around the elder man and they held hands and chatted like old friends.

His parents were religious teachers in Bagan Datoh, where he grew up, and that part of his upbringing comes through in the way he carries himself. He was the first Umno leader to have a surau in his house, long before it became the fashion among the Muslim elite.

He is one of the few UMNO leaders who appears at certain public functions in jubah and kopiah, and many had noted that his acceptance speech for the top post was flavoured with Quranic verses.

Dr Ahmad Zahid’s appointment is seen as one of those timely moves in assisting Najib to consolidate the party. The new No.2 is charismatic and can be entrusted to champion the Malay cause and quench Muslim sentiment.

But back to Najib. His party is seeing a new side to him now that the velvet gloves have come off. Very few in his party thought he had the nerve to drop his deputy but he not only chopped his deputy, he also showed his former loyalist the door.

Muhyiddin had gone against the instruction to all Cabinet members that only Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanazlah was authorised to speak on the 1MDB issue while investigations were ongoing. He crossed the line not once but twice.

Shortly after a video of Muhyiddin slamming the 1MDB issue at an UMNO event in Janda Baik went viral, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kader had told aides that was not the way to do things.

“If anyone wants to go against the President, he should resign first. As long as I am in the party, I will defend the president and PM,” he had told his aides.

Najib had said it was a difficult decision to make. Muhyiddin is his senior by a few years and Shafie goes back a long way with him.Moreover, said UMNO supreme council member Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, Najib had lent his clout to help the two men win in the last UMNO election and he had not expected them to turn against him.

“Loyalty and teamwork are very important to him. The PM does not scold people. He doesn’t raise his voice or lose his temper even when (he is) angry. He has been too nice and accommodating. I think some people crossed the line,” said Ahmad Shabery.

The reshuffle, regardless of whether one agrees or disagrees with it, is the Prime Minister’s prerogative. Even Muhyiddin acknowledges that.It is quite apparent that Najib’s desire to stay on was greater than Muhyiddin’s desire to become Prime Minister. Moreover, the reshuffle came on the same day as his appointment of a new Attorney-General. Beneath Najib’s polished Malay gentleman demeanour lies some very shrewd survival instincts. Those who continue to cross him will probably regret it because having tasted blood, it will be easier the next time around. In fact, he may even come to enjoy the taste of it.To put it in Manglish, his Cabinet members would not dare to “play-play” with him anymore and, as they say, it is better to be feared than to be loved in politics.

His tough line with opponents in his party and Cabinet has, quite surprisingly, drawn him grudging regard from some quarters. For too long, he was known as Mr Nice. But he has shown that he is willing to use the sword.

“I have a feeling that some people like this kind of toughness. It is, in some strange way, equated with leadership and taking charge, especially where the Chinese are concerned. Chinese history and literature are full of such stories of strategic survival,” said Fui Soong, CEO of the CENSE think tank.

All of this should not be taken to mean that the 1MDB issue will go away any time soon. Najib’s team will need to manage the issue and provide answers, closure and more importantly, rebut some of the absurd things popping up every other day.

The latest was another claim by UK-based Sarawak Report claiming that Najib would be charged in court soon. It turned out to be another fake document and was immediately shot down by the Attorney-General’s Department. Najib will continue to come under smear campaigns by groups like Sarawak Report.

But he is now quite unassailable within UMNO because there is no one big enough to challenge him.

His Deputy President is out in the cold and of the three UMNO Vice-Presidents, one has been promoted, another has been chopped and the third is his first cousin.

It is all kao-tim (settled), as the Chinese would say. Politically speaking, it looks like a pretty smooth Machiavellian stroke. He and his new Deputy will now have to go down to assuage the ground over what has happened.But the media interest is about to move on to something new, namely a possible conclusion to what has been described as the greatest mystery in aviation history.

A piece of wreckage or flaperon believed to be part of MH370 has been found washed up on the French Reunion Island off the coast of Madagascar.It was one of those goosebump-inducing type of news – after all these months, the sea currents have carried a part of the aircraft to an island with the uncanny name of Reunion. It is as if the lost souls are reaching out to be reunited with their loved ones.

Airline disasters and political issues have seemed intertwined in dominating the news in the last year or so. And it is about to happen again.

Malaysia: 1MDB Intimidation by the IGP to come


August 1, 2015

READ THIS:

https://therecounter.wordpress.com/2015/08/01/macc-advisor-who-met-sarawak-report-arrested-by-special-branch-as-crackdown-begins/

Malaysia: 1MDB Intimidation by the IGP to come

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com

Najib in anxietyThe Scared Prime Minister

Police have also detained a Deputy Public Prosecutor involved in the recent arrests linked to money from a government agency that allegedly went into Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s private bank accounts, say sources.

Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Deputy Public Prosecutor Ahmad Sazilee Abdul Khairy, who is seconded from the Attorney-General’s Chambers (A-GC), was the third person arrested in a sweep this morning.

The other two, Tan Sri Rashpal Singh and Jessica Kaur, will be released tonight after Police failed to get a remand at the Petaling Jaya Police Headquarters this afternoon.

Rashpal is a former MACC advisor, while Jessica is an officer with the Attorney-General Chambers. Both were detained this morning and brought to the Petaling Jaya District Police Headquarters where they are being held for questioning under Section 124 of the Penal Code that pertains to activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy. It is learnt they will likely be freed once the Police, who have 24 hours to detain them, finish questioning them.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar confirmed the arrests, Malaysiakini reported, but said DPP Sazilee was not remanded as the Police were expected to finish questioning him today.

Khalid told the news portal that the arrests were made in connection with a Police report lodged against Sarawak Report editor Clare-Rewcastle Brown.

Rashpal and Jessica’s lawyers have been tight lipped over exactly what their clients are being investigated for. Rashpal, however, was mentioned in an article by website Malaysia Today as having met Rewcastle-Brown in London and was under suspicion of leaking information to the UK based website on 1MDB.

MACC denied this in a statement on July 21, saying that Rashpal, as an advisor, had no access to or oversight of the agency’s probe. His tenure with the advisory board had also ended in February.

MACC has also denied that any leak of information from government investigators on 1MDB had come from within the anti-graft agency.

MACC and the A-GC are part of the special government task force that is probing 1MDB, as well as allegations that money from companies linked to the state investor had been deposited into Prime MInister Dautk Seri Najib Razak’s personal accounts. The other two agencies in the task force are the Police and Bank Negara Malaysia.

David Cameron talks to Najib on Democracy, Civil Rights and Corruption


July 31, 2015

Bilateral Relations

David Cameron challenges Malaysian PM Najib Razak on Corruption

The Prime Minister urged Mr Razak to clean up his government and challenged the treatment of Anwar Ibrahim, the country’s opposition leader in jail

Najib-Razak-david-_3392712bDavid Cameron and Najib

Allegations that $700 million (£450 million) in state development funds ended up in Mr Najib’s personal bank accounts overshadowed a visit by the Prime Minister designed to build trade ties.

During a long, one-to-one meeting, Mr Cameron on Thursday urged Mr Najib to clean up his government.

In a pointed move, he then met with civil society leaders, including journalists, the G25 group of campaigners and lawyers, who are campaigning for greater democracy and a free press.Mr Cameron also challenged Mr Najib over the treatment of Anwar Ibrahim, the opposition leader in jail on sodomy charges.

Sir Kim Darroch, Mr Cameron’s national security adviser, met with Mr Anwar’s daughter who is playing a leading role in the opposition movement.They discussed building a free press and her father’s treatment.

The encounters followed demands from some opposition figures that Mr Cameron cancel the visit, during which he courted investors to fund the so-called Northern Powerhouse infrastructure projects in Britain.

The Prime Minister said: “It is right to go ahead with the visit, but nothing should be off the table. We should talk about these issues including the specific ones now,” he said.

“We always have discussions with civil society figures, anti-corruption campaigners, opposition leaders and all the rest and that will happen on this visit too.

“I don’t think it helps not traveling to a country and turning away. It is better to go and talk about these things.”

UK officials stressed the visit was to build relationships between “peoples”, not leaders.

After the one-to-one meeting, Mr Cameron is understood to have repeated the message to a wider gathering of Malaysian government figures in front of Mr Najib.

In an address in Singapore on Tuesday, Mr Cameron denounced corruption as the “enemy of progress” that held back growth and fuelled al-Qaeda and migration.

“We have a strong relationship and that enables us to talk difficult issues. I want to raise some of the issues I raised in my speech earlier in the week, such as ethics in business and fighting corruption,” he is understood to have said.

“We should be working together for an open society and open economy.”

Mr Najib is facing growing calls to resign over the allegations, which he denies. He this week fired attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail, who was investigating the scandal, and Muhyiddin Yassin, who had criticised him over the affair.