Najib on Al Jazeera

Videos of Najib’s interview on Al Jazeera with Riz Khan.

Part 1:

Part 2:

The ‘perception’ of crime

Not too many days ago, Najib was saying that crime rates in Malaysia are actually lower than that in Hong Kong and Japan, and that we should change our perception of crime.

I wouldn’t really know, since I’m not in Malaysia. But my dad just came back to NZ from Malaysia recently (a couple of days ago, to be exact), and he had some horror stories to tell.

The perception is, he says, that crimes are happening in broad daylight, and the police actually know about them. He told me that the victims don’t even bother to report the crimes, simply because nothing will be done.

He said someone told him a story of going to the police station to report a gang of snatch theives, and the police said, “Ah, saya tau siapa mereka. Kes kamu dah kes ke-7. Dalam hari ni saja, dah kes ke-7. Kita tau, geng ni operate kat kawasan ni hari ni. Takpe takpe, kita tau.” Makes one wonder why the police know of the “operation”, but they don’t carry out an operation to catch those snatch theives themselves.

And then the perception is that these theives are actually sons of high-up people. Maybe some Datuk’s son, or some Police Inspector’s son. And well, the officers who actually DO catch these theives will “get into trouble” if they were to mess around with them. So might as well sit and not do anything.

But they can’t very well really just sit and do nothing. So they catch the illegal workers who do commit petty crimes. Why catch these and not the other offenders? Well, the perception is that someone will *pay* to get these workers out of detention, or the police will ask that the theif share his spoils in order to go free.

Now. How true all this is, no one really knows. But that’s what my dad came home and told me. And it’s the “perception”. But for as long as crimes are as rampant as they are, with people snatching handbags on motorbikes in broad daylight, these perceptions can only change with a drastic improvement of safety, and a drastic drop in crimes.

Abdul Razak: I know, okay? I know!

After Razak Baginda read his press statement, there was a 48-minute press-conference. The Nut Graph has some excerpts of it HERE.

Are you saying that Balasubramaniam’s statutory declarations were lies?

As you know, the whole issue of the two statutory declarations by Bala, (are) now under police investigation. I have given (my) full cooperation to the police. I have been interviewed by the police after my release. What I’ve said today to all of you is what I told the police, that Datuk Najib never met the deceased.

How do you know?

How do I know? (Pause) I know, okay? I know!

Have you contacted Datuk Seri Najib?

Well, that was the first question asked. I’ve not met him, I’ve not seen him, I’ve not spoken to him, I’ve not SMSed him…anything else…I’ve not emailed him, I’ve not…that’s it. I’ve not been in touch with him at all.

Are you planning to be in touch with him?

(Chuckles) Well, let me put it this way. I’ve got my immediate plans and that’s my immediate concern.

Where did you meet Altantuya?

I don’t really want to go there. I’ve already said that there was a death. It doesn’t make a difference where I met her. All I wanted to say in my statement is that Datuk Seri Najib never met the woman. So I think you can say that from there, whoever said whatever, they’re all lies.

When you were in court, there was a lot of public opinion…

When you say public opinion, I really wonder who you have in mind. So many people, when you talk about people’s power. Just look at Thailand, the people is against the government or in the Philippines, you see people are in the streets, 100,000, 500,000. The media blow it out of proportion but hang on, is that democracy? If you’re talking about 500 people going out in the streets as opposed to a population of 100 million, is that reflective of democracy?

If I have money and I pay everyone RM10 and get 100,000 people out in the streets and protest against the government, is that people power? Is that public opinion? That’s not public opinion, that’s just manipulation. So if you say public opinion, you talk about it as if it is a coherent consensus. I don’t think it’s a consensus. So I don’t want to pander to the so-called public opinion and I’d like to ask you, who is the public opinion? Can a blogger reflect a public opinion? I mean if that’s the case, I can have a public opinion. I can run you down and I’ll say this is a public opinion.

So I think I’m being very sceptical and as Malaysian society develops, we should question rather than accept. If we descend to a level where, a taxi driver for instance, someone who doesn’t know the facts, writes and that becomes public opinion, then I feel sorry for society because the society has descended to such a low level. Let’s not talk about Malaysia, let’s talk about the knowledge society, the thinking public but what’s missing at the moment is, just one individual or two individuals can form an opinion and that becomes public. Come on, give me a break.

If anything at all, I’d agree with him on ONE count, and that is that we should question rather than accept. No doubt this case is shrouded in a whole lot of mystery and unanswered questions. We don’t know what is what, what is right and what is not. What we know is, there are too many questions and open ends for this case to be just ‘over’.

Anil Netto has summarised his questions HERE.
Jed Yoong has a collection of views from other blogs HERE.

There are a couple of things that I don’t understand from reading this excerpt of his conference. Like when he said there are immediate plans and immediate concerns when asked about his plans to meet up with Najib. What does he mean by that? It HAS been quite a while since his release, so it’s also quite curious why they have had NO contact whatsoever, considering that they were close enough for Najib to arrange for his lawyer, assuming that the SMSes between Najib and Shafee were real (Najib did not deny the authenticity).

And I’m also not too sure why Abdul Razak found the need to make a press statement mainly to say that Najib never met Altantuya.  As Abdul Razak said:

All I wanted to say in my statement is that Datuk Seri Najib never met the woman.

His ‘knowing’ that Najib never met Altantuya is not exactly very convincing too, now is it?

But the thing for me is this. I don’t know anything more than what a normal person would know from just reading blogs and news articles online. So I don’t know if Najib or Rosmah ever met Altantuya, or if Bala is really missing or just on holiday, or if Razak Baginda is telling the truth.

My main concern is that there was a heinous crime. A woman’s body was bombed into bits with C4 explosives. Someone HAS to be responsible for murdering her the way he/she/they did. And this someone who is responsible is obviously someone who has hardly any conscience or compassion, or love for life and humankind. And to think that this person(s) is Malaysian just saddens me to bits.

If the two police officers who are currently still under trial are the ones responsible, it would be the best of all scenarios, if there ever can be a ‘best’ scenario. Because at the very least, the killers are caught. But what if they are not the guilty ones? Or what if they are not the ONLY guilty ones? This thought scares me even more. Because that would mean that a cold-blooded murderer is still out and free.

Will there ever be closure? For Altantuya’s family, and for Malaysians?

Abdul Razak: Najib and Rosmah have never met Altantuya

From the Malaysian Insider:

Political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda said today that Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had never met his Mongolian lover Altantuya Shaariibuu who was brutally murdered two years ago.

He pleaded for the “lies about Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife” to stop.

At a press conference today, he said: “I know Najib and his wife had never met the deceased, Altantuya.”

At today’s press conference, Abdul Razak said that those who have slandered the Najib and his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor can “never produce authentic evidence because there is none.”

He said that there was no linkage between the deceased and the submarine deal, which has been the subject of widespread speculation as the motive for the murder of Altantuya.

He said the deal was inked in June 2002 but he had only met the deceased in late 2004.

“I fail to see the connection. These are vicious lies,” he said.

When pressed on who the liars were, he acknowledged that they were bloggers without naming any specific individuals.

Malaysiakini has more of the same HERE. (login required)

I can’t say I’m surprised with this latest turn of events. I’m mighty interested to see the response from blogosphere though, now that Abdul Razak has come straight out to say that everything has been a ‘lie’.

I wonder if Abdul Razak knows anything else other than Najib and Rosmah not being involved. Just wondering, not insinuating anything. 😉

ADDED: Heads-up from anakpakross. The transript for Abdul Razak Baginda’s press conference can be found on the Malaysian Insider HERE.

Parliament: Winding up of Budget

Or at the very least, that’s what is SUPPOSED to happen.

The Malaysian Insider reports that Najib is going to reveal a new budget package, after revising some of the numbers in the previous budget.

It’s been more than half an hour since I saw Najib’s face on my computer screen. And I have yet to hear ANYTHING on the Budget.

All I’m hearing is Points of Order, and noise about how unprecedented it is for a Minister to not allow ‘penjelasan’ time until after he finishes presenting.

Look, let the man do his job. Let him present whatever it is that he wants to present, then make your points after. Whatever. Just let us hear it first! How in the world are you even going to ask for ‘penjelasan’, when he hasn’t even spoken?

What’s the use of complaining about how he should have come up with this new package two weeks earlier? It’s something worth complaining about, yes. But not when you haven’t even heard him out yet!

The Speaker is definitely exasperated. I am too, and I’m not even in the Dewan.

UPDATE: I was stranded with no internet connection for about 45 minutes. And now that I’ve got it back, it appears that the Opposition have left the building! Don’t know why they left, but under the circumstances I saw before, I’m assuming that they walked-out because of Najib’s unwillingness to allow ‘penjelasan’.

So now that Najib’s finally done with his presentation of what is essentially a new budget package, none of the Opposition MPs are there to make any rebuttal whatsoever.

So what’s the whole point?