I have not been a fan of Mahathir Mohamad, the former prime minister of Malaysia, but he made an interesting point lately. He mentioned on 31 July 2015 that it is now a ‘crime’ to talk about 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Although there is no law against anyone speaking about 1MDB, several well known individuals and institutions have been punished for speaking on 1MDB’s mounting debts, questionable transactions and corruption.
Muhyiddin Yassin and Shafie Aqdal were both unceremonially sacked from their respective deputy prime minister and minister posts by the prime minister of Malaysia, Najib Razak for speaking on 1MDB’s problems. They did not disclosed much details on 1MDB but they called for the truth on1MDB to be revealed with an independent and thorough investigation when they were still in the ministerial cabinet.
Muhyiddin made the latest comments on what he knows about 1MDB after his removal from the cabinet. These comments support the revelations made so far by other sources.
Tony Pua and Rafizi Ramli, opposition members of the parliament of Malaysia, are black-listed by the Malaysian immigration department and banned from travelling overseas. No reason was given for the ban except for ‘instructions from above’. The immigration department comes under the purview of Malaysian home minister, Zahid Hamidi. It is believed that they are penalised for their roles in explaining the intricacies of 1MDB transactions to the people.
The publication of The Edge newspaper was also suspended for 3 months after revealing the details of alleged frauds by 1MDB. Zahid Hamidi claimed that The Edge newspaper published untrue news but he could not name which news or any parts of the news that were untrue. You will appreciate how bizarre it is if you are penalised for committing murder but you have not been informed of the very basic information about who is the victim of your murder.
|The Malay Mail Online|
The Sarawak Report website which has been exposing information on 1MDB’s potential wrongdoings is now blocked in Malaysia. No one can access http://www.sarawakreport.org/ with a Malaysian IP address. The information disclosed by Sarawak Report has been supported by substantial amount of documentary evidence and has appeared to be consistent with the news published by Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Bloomberg, The Guardian newspaper, etc.
|Despite the claim of violation of Malaysian national law, the ministry has not explained how is it in violation|
As regards the exposé by WSJ, Najib merely told his lawyers to write to WSJ to seek explanation. He did not expressly threaten any form of legal proceeding in the letter itself despite some ambiguous use of legal terms. Unsurprisingly, some local mainstream media played the letter up as ‘legal action’ to bolster Najib’s claim of being wronged. The letter, together with the local media play-up, was more to create a misleading smokescreen to the rural and less informed folks in Malaysia, where support base of Najib’s party is.
Dow Jones & Company, the publisher for the WSJ, has since responded to the request for explanation and said that it would continue to stand by the accuracy of its reports. Najib has remained deafeningly quiet since the WSJ's firm reply. He did not or dared not instigate a legal action despite the fact that he has openly claimed to be wrongly accused by a conspiracy of international media. The local mainstream media has so far remained silent on WSJ’s response as well. [Update] Najib's law firm has recently issued a statement to say that it is looking to seek legal advice from legal firms outside Malaysia to determine the next course of action. The firm and Najib did not know what were they doing all these while despite issuing the legal letter? As suspected, the whole affair with this Hafarizam law firm's letter was merely for local mainstream media spin to create a perception of Najib's innocence.
The Malaysian prime minster has not initiated a legal action against anyone thus far despite his claim of being wrongly accused by the foreigners and political conspiracy. He has neither provided any evidence to show that these news reports and information on 1MDB are untrue, nor showed any proof of documentary tampering by the Edge newspaper or foreign media as claimed by him.
Najib has specialised in making counter accusations against others, backed by local mainstream media spins, to portray a perception of his innocence. He has however failed to provide any evidence of his innocence. Najib is apparently not even able to make simple and straight denials.
DO YOU SEE THE TRAITS OF AN INNOCENT MAN IN NAJIB?
- For better understanding of 1MDB crisis in Malaysia, please search or google '1MDB crisis' to know the latest news on the scandal. There is now a whole literature of 1MDB issues on the news which are too extensive for this posting.
- Please search or google '1MDB arrests' to see the latest victims of how whistle-blowers, messengers and critics have been arrested for unsubstantiated or at times even unspecified crime.