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Sooner or later, Najib must face allegations

Posted in Uncategorized by malaysiasms on April 7, 2009

Malaysiakini

Steve Oh

najib-07

I refer to the Malaysiakini report Najib sworn in as PM.

Many Malaysians would have celebrated the appointment of their new Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak with more fanfare but sadly the event has been marred by the ‘gorilla’ on his back.

It is the first time in the country’s history a leader’s appointment is so doubted, so thwarted, that 81 members of parliament and a former government minister have appealed to the country’s King to intervene. Of course, the gesture is symbolic for how can the king do something so ridiculous?

Those who believe in the rule of law must be sure that a person is guilty before being condemned even if we believe that judges can be unjust. Najib Razak would have been deemed guilty had the King stopped the investiture. And that would have been unfair.

It is the court that decides if one is guilty or not, not the media or the public and Najib was not even been called in as a witness in the Altantuya trial, which adds to the intrigue.

Allegations of wrongdoing related to the Altantuya murder, helicopter purchases, abuse of power, a RM50 million bribery allegation are some of the thorns in his side that he can’t ignore. At some point, it may be necessary for him to bite the bullet and face those charges head on by initiating a full inquiry so as to clear his name once and for all.

Or go to court and let justice take its course. Otherwise the nagging pain will incapacitate his ability to focus on the job. If the aim to stay mum to make the allegations go away, I think it is a hope against hope.

There is no way the media, both at home and abroad, can be forced not to refer to the allegations and this is going to affect his ability to hold a stiff upper lip whenever he fronts journalists, especially in the West, who are going to ask him those pesky questions especially about Altantuya. Hardly a day passes without some foreign news report regurgitating the allegations.

The fact that Altantuya was a beautiful woman only fires up the imagination of the media that latches on to a sensational story like a swarm of flies onto a rotting fish. What has made the situation worse is that Abdul Razak Baginda has been acquitted so it leaves the nagging question, ‘Who killed Altantuya?’ and ‘Who ordered her killing?’

Malaysians look up to the office of prime minister with pride. None of those who have gone into the august office have had a millstone around their neck like Najib Razak has and it does not augur well for the nation that he takes up the nation’s highest office handicapped by these allegations, some of which are not merely rumours but serious statutory declarations.

Nothing is as cruel and unjust as trial by media.

As long as the rumour mills are busy and the innuendos fly and the statutory declarations are left to rot the damage is done. Najib has two options. To ignore them or to bring those who make or spread them to justice. Some allegations may be easier to resolve than others. But if there is the will to get to the truth, no effort should be spared.

It no longer is a private matter because the reputation of the one who occupies the highest office in the land is important to every citizen and the honour of the country is at stake. It has become a national issue and sooner or later, it has to be resolved – but not with more clampdowns but proper investigations.

The ride ahead for the new PM is just going to get bumpier and with the return of the ‘Godfather’, Malaysian politics will be anything but boring, especially after a lull of snoring.

Perhaps people should start cancelling their cable television subscriptions because the action will soon heat up. Let’s hope it will be more exciting than the last session.

And let’s hope justice will prevail.

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