Posts Tagged ‘Najib Tun Razak’



Good job AG Tommy Thomas.

Malaysians are amazed by the professional difference between the present AG Tommy Thomas to that of the previous AG Apandi Ali. Previous AG Apandi Ali proudly announced that there is no criminal case against Najib Tun Razak and his conspirators, what a clown!

Anyway, Malaysia filed criminal charges against Goldman Sachs over the 1MDB scandal. It accused the bank of making false and misleading statements, a rare rebuke of an institution that has long represented the pinnacle of money and power.

The Malaysian authorities also charged several individuals in connection with the multibillion-dollar investment fraud that ensnared Goldman and led to the ouster of Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak. The government said it would seek criminal fines in excess of $2.7 billion.

The charges relate to a Malaysian state investment fund called 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB, from which officials and employees are suspected of looting billions of dollars. The money funded an enormous spending spree, according to U.S. federal prosecutors.

Read the rest in the nytimes.com

GOLDMAN SUCKS CHARGED FOR GIGANTIC MALAYSIAN FRAUD.

The filing of federal charges could increase pressure on Goldman, the…

Najib and his cousin brother Hishammuddin had essentially placed the country at risk of “terrorism target” because the operation was held during the peak of Syrian War. 

Finance Twitter

We raised our suspicions two years ago in 2016 when Saudi Arabia bragged about their massive military exercise – Northern Thunder – which involved 350,000 troops from 20 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE, Oman, Jordan, Pakistan, Djibouti, Mauritania, Senegal, Sudan, Chad, Tunisia, Morocco, Comoros, Mauritius, Egypt, Maldives and Malaysia.

Saudi news media boasted that the force included 2,540 aircraft, 460 helicopters and 20,000 armoured vehicles, arguably the largest military operation in the region since the liberation of Kuwait in 1990’s Operation Desert Storm. But it raised the red flag, simply because Malaysia was the only country in the Southeast Asia involved in the military exercise (from February 16 until March 4, 2016).

It was particularly strange because not even Indonesia or Brunei was invited. So, why was Malaysia so special that their armed forces were involved in the military exercise some 6,000 kilometres away? Did then-PM Najib Razak send the country’s military to the Gulf as part of his commitment to boost Saudi propaganda machine, in exchange for the US$681 million (RM2.6 billion) discovered in his bank accounts?

Read more here


This is a nicely written editorial piece by The Malaysian Insight.

Here goes…

https://www.themalaysianinsight.com/s/57409

IF it were up to the politicians, Najib Razak would have been arrested and charged with a string of offences by now.

Indeed, there is some frustration among the Pakatan Harapan (PH) corps that the former prime minister is still a free man, more than six weeks after he and Barisan Nasional were ushered out of Putrajaya.

Judging from comments on social media, anger is percolating among some ordinary Malaysians that Najib’s day of reckoning ‎has not arrived.

This sentiment is understandable, especially against the backdrop of ‎the astonishing and obscene amount of jewellery and cash found at properties linked to the former first couple.

So what gives? What’s the delay in arresting Najib and charging him for offences under the anti-money laundering act?

The simple answer is: professionalism.

Attorney-General Tommy Thomas is not a politician. He does not need to play to the gallery. He has been given a two-year term by Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and chief among his responsibilities is to nail all those linked to the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal.

A senior lawyer with more than four decades of experience arguing cases in court, Thomas knows that you only go to court when you are satisfied that you have covered all the bases and the witnesses’ testimonies can withstand cross-examination.

To say that this is a high-profile case is an understatement. Media interest in Malaysia over the return of Dr Mahathir and Najib’s political demise has only been matched by the coverage of  the sacking and jailing of Anwar Ibrahim in 1998.

Then, the Malaysian government had put on a show that resulted in the world laughing and ridiculing our legal system. Who can forget the porous prosecution led by then attorney-general Mokhtar Abdullah and Abdul Gani Patail?

Who can forget the many instances prosecution witnesses were demolished within an hour of being on the stand by the superb defence team led by the late Raja Aziz Addruse?

Who can forget the prosecution having to make amendments to the charges to cover embarrassing mistakes?

The world’s media watched from the press gallery and reported with incredulity the amateurish prosecution trial of the former deputy prime minister.

New Malaysia cannot afford its legal system to suffer another black eye. The new Mahathir administration that promises to deliver a more transparent, independent and rule of law-based legal system has to be seen to be ticking those boxes in the trial of the decade.

Ultimately, it is to the benefit of the ordinary Malaysian or the small man that the person in charge of bringing prosecution is influenced only by the files in front of him, and not by pressure from outside sources.

We cannot have a return to the days when we faced enforcement action from government agencies and prosecution as part of a political shakedown or because we had offended some little Napoleon. Or because, it was the politically expedient thing to do.

If the new AG of the Mahathir administration is being more meticulous and thorough in preparing the case against Najib, that’s a good development. It means that he knows that he believes that he is not going to get a free pass in court simply because he represents the government of the day.

He has to win on merit.

Thomas was brought into the system precisely for this reason: to give confidence to Malaysians and foreigners that the new government truly wants a clean break from the past. – June 28, 2018

THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT


I picked this piece from my WhatsApp group. It seems, folks are getting more and more restless as the days go by, after more than 30 days of the new Pakatan Harapan government, and still no sign of DR Mahathir arresting and charging former Premier Najib Tun Razak. Thanks to the multibillion-dollar scandal involving Najib and Jho Low’s brainchild: a government investment fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), the fund became a 50 billion ringgit black hole, for which Malaysians will pick up the tab for generations. While many people are asking for the arrest of the former premier, it is not so easy says Dr Mahathir. People are waiting – when is Dr Mahathir going to arrest Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak?

Here goes……

Many are wondering why our dear Old Horse (Tun M) has yet to commence prosecution proceedings against our ex-MO1.

My reply is simple. Much as you and I, and I’m sure the majority of Malaysians, want justice to be dispensed against our ex-MO1 speedily, but we need to be wise and appreciate a few factors our dear Old Horse need to consider carefully before he takes action.

Firstly, it’s unbecoming in the Malay culture to hit at another fellow Malay/Muslim during their holy month of Ramadan, and now the happy 10th. month of Syawal of rejoicing and celebration. He will lose some goodwill with his community if he does it.

Secondly, the legal issues involved are extremely complex as we are dealing with the biggest kleptocracy case the world has ever witnessed with intricate links across many jurisdictions. We need the evidence, expertise and experience to deal with such complicated cases. Hence, the wisdom of Old Horse to recruit Tommy Thomas as our new AG to fit those requirements for this particular onerous assignment. Tommy Thomas is only in his position hardly for half a month now. He needs time.

Thirdly, and most important, Old Horse needs first to drain the swamp which is still infested by and with appointees of ex-MO1, be them in the AG’s Chambers, PDRM, MACC, BNM, the judiciary or other institutions. They can sabotage our investigation, enforcement, decision etc very subtly and finally scuttling off everything. Old Horse can’t afford to lose in his prosecution against our ex-MO1 in this war! The Chief Justice Tun Raus Sharif and President of the Court of Appeal (PCA) Tan Sri Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin will only leave at the end of July, and with their presence in office there won’t be certainty of a successful prosecution against our ex-MO1. Besides, there’s still a binding Federal Court decision by these two to affirm that a PM is not a public official to be liable for certain acts. That decision needs to be overturned first but only after the two have vacated office.

So my dear friends, we all need to be patient and more sympathetic to our dear Old Horse as he knows what he is doing as he’s very much an action man who won’t want to delay even for a minute. He’s bidding for the right strategic time to strike once the infested swamp is drained and cleared! Take heart. 😊


Who would dare to form the UMNO strategic media unit and operate it with immunity and impunity in UMNO if it is not associated with the powers-that-be?

By Lim Kit Siang

How low and quick the mighty have fallen.

It was only six months ago that the 71st UMNO General Assembly was held in jubilation and hubris that UMNO was the only political party in the world that continued to rule and had never been defeated in elections since 1955, and was set to retain power not only in the imminent 14th General Election, but virtually to be the perpetual government of Malaysia!

 

But the nursery rhyme which my generation learnt in primary school in the fifties came to pass, viz:

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

The fall had been so decisive and categorical that no UMNO leader dare to contradict or countermand the pronouncements of a headless, faceless and soulless creature, the self-proclaimed UMNO strategic media unit.

Are current UMNO leaders so ashamed of UMNO that they have to depend on a faceless, headless and soulless UMNO Strategic Media Unit to speak for them?

The faceless, headless and soulless UMNO Strategic Media Unit said in a statement yesterday that neither former Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak nor the former director of the Barisan Nasional Strategic Media Unit controlled it.

Let me tell the UMNO Strategic Media Unit: Tell it to the marines!

Who would dare to form the UMNO strategic media unit and operate it with immunity and impunity in UMNO if it is not associated with the powers-that-be – and Najib is undoubtedly the “power behind the throne” although he has resigned as UMNO President to take responsibility for UMNO/BN’s electoral disaster in the 14GE.

Who would dare, for instance, to lay claim in the name of UMNO without any authorization from the UMNO Supreme Council the assets seized by the police after the 14GE from Najib’s Pavilion Residences containing over RM114 million in cash in 26 different foreign currencies and some half a billion ringgit in jewellery, watches and designer handbags?

It is most foolish and puerile for the UMNO strategic media unit to raise the subject of the Red Bean Army, another concoction of UMNO propagandists and cybertroopers.

Immediately after the last general elections five years ago, UMNO/BN propagandists went to town alleging that the DAP had funded a fictitious “Red Bean Army” (RBA) of 3,000 cybertroopers with a budget of RM100 million to RM1 billion in the previous six years to attack the UMNO/BN authorities and to defame UMNO/BN leaders over a whole variety of issues.

They even alleged that the RBA had two operational centres, one in Hotel Concorde in Kuala Lumpur and the other based in Komtar in Penang.

I was intrigued by the UMNO/BN propagandists’ campaign of lies, fake news and false information about the DAP-funded RBA and I led a team of DAP MPs accompanied by journalists to make a surprise visit to Concorde Hotel on the night of July 4, 2014.

We found Concorde Hotel – which was supposed to be one the two operational centres of the billion-ringgit Red Bean Army – crawling with UMNO leaders and operatives but no Red Bean Army. We found something even more shocking – that the exorbitant ice-kachang in Concorde Hotel had no red beans at all!

As a result, the UMNO/BN fairy tale of DAP-funded RBA became a national standing joke and it died a natural death, until its revival by the UMNO strategic media unit yesterday.

However, what is interesting about the UMNO allegations about the RBA is that it revealed the UMNO modus operandi in recruiting cybertroopers, especially the funding involved – as no UMNO cybertrooper or election worker will volunteer for free or work only for “water and sunshine” but had to be paid, and paid very handsomely!

The going rate for the UMNO/BN cybertroopers would be RM500 to RM3,000 monthly, including free telephone gadgets and laptops.

Last November, the UMNO Information Technnology Bureau organized a convention for some 3,500 UMNO cybertroopers.

Taking an average expenditure of RM2,000 a month for each UMNO cybertrooper, this would come to some RM7 million a year, and this would not include the expenditures incurred for cybertroopers engaged by other units or state outfits of UMNO/BN.

Who would finally foot the bill for these astronomical expenditures, if not the Malaysian taxpayers themselves?

Let me tell the UMNO strategic unit that claims that DAP spent from RM100 million to RM1 billion for the Red Bean Army is the figment of imagination of the UMNO propagandists and cybertroopers.

DAP does not pay a single sen for the so-called Red Bean Army if this is meant to be the army of pro-DAP and pro-Pakatan Harapan users on the social media.

But this is the not the case with the highly-funded UMNO/BN cybertroopers, who are paid not only from 1MDB funds but also from the public coffers, like JASA which had a budget of RM60 million year!

The Malaysian Insight carried a very interesting and relevant report yesterday, headlined: “Election shock leaves UMNO news portals scrambling”, as it is not only UMNO news portals but the army of UMNO cybertroopers who are hard hit by UMNO electoral diaster in the 14GE – as funds for them have dried up!

The Malaysian Insight reported that following UMNO/BN’s defeat in the 14GE, some news portals that were tied to the party have shut down while those still operating have shed staff in order to survive.

The TMI reported that despite pouring millions into portals and paying cyber troopers, Umno and the BN lost the perception battle. Their news portal did not have the traction or eyeballs as more independent news sites. They were not helped by the sycophantic manner they covered the news.

As TMI concluded, Najib and his advisers were proved wrong that the 14GE was a numbers game and the more sycophantic news portals and cyber troopers they had, the better chance of controlling the Internet space.

However, the most significant thing about the UMNO Strategic Media Unit statement is what it omitted instead of what it said.

There was deafening silence to my allegation that it was the UMNO leaders and operatives, when they were in government, who abused their powers and interfered with DAP’s internal affairs, funding mercenaries and soldiers-of-fortune to influence the Registrar of Societies (RoS) to break or ban DAP, resulting in an six-year DAP ordeal from 2012-2018.

The UMNO Strategic Media Unit may not know that they are giving me the height of flattery in even suggesting that I could interfere and influence the outcome of the UMNO party elections at the end of this month.

Have the confidence of UMNO Strategic Media Unit in UMNO sunk so low after the jubilation and hubris only six months ago?

What the UMNO leaders, including the faceless, headless and soulless UMNO Strategic Media Unit should worry about is whether the UMNO elections at the end of this month are illegal, with UMNO electing illegal UMNO President, Deputy President, Vice President and UMNO leadership.

Is UMNO today an illegal political party?

Under the party constitution, Umno is required to hold supreme council elections once every three years, but it has the power to give an 18-month extension under special circumstances, like preparing for the 14th general election.

The last Umno triennial elections were held on Oct 20, 2013, which means that Umno supreme council elections should have been held by Oct 19, 2016, to comply with the three-year requirement, or by April 19, 2018, if an 18-month extension was decided upon by the UMNO supreme council.

On June 26, 2015, Najib announced that the UMNO supreme council had decided to put off the party election due in October 2016 by 18 months.

He said: “According to Clause 10.16 of the Umno constitution, the supreme council has the right to postpone elections for its supreme council, divisions and branches. This postponement cannot exceed 18 months from the date the elections were supposed to be held.”

That is, by April 19, 2018.

There was, however, no Umno elections held by that date, and this fatal violation of the party constitution cannot be cured, overcome or rescued in any manner by the Registrar of Societies.

I have studied Section 3A of the Societies Act 1966, which had been quoted by the Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor as vesting powers on the ROS to give a further year-long extension for Umno supreme council election after April 19, 2019.

Section 3A states: “In addition to the powers, duties and functions conferred on the registrar by this Act and any regulations made thereunder, the registrar shall have and may exercise all such powers, discharge all such duties and perform all such functions as may be necessary for the purpose of giving effect to and carrying out the provisions of this Act.”

Anyone who understand English or Bahasa Malaysia will know that the simple and very plain language in Section 3A of the Societies Act does not give the ROS any powers to extend a further year-long extension for UMNO supreme council to be held after 19th April 2018.

From LIM KIT SIANG’s Blog and can be found HERE

NB: As of now, MACC had already frozen 900 bank accounts (including UMNO – owned accounts) linked to the 1MDB scandal. In other words, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has frozen the Umno party’s accounts. Without free flow of money, UMNO is as good as dead.

 


My daughter, Vilashini Somiah, who has several new age fads about food swears by Quinoa. She calls it super food. She has tried to get me to have it for dinner once. I kind of like the stuff and now I take a tablespoon of quinoa every morning with my oats and other grains. I still prefer my wheat and occasionally some rice.  Now quinoa is the cause of a raging fight in Malaysia. I can understand the intensity.

“To millions of Malaysians, rice is at the center of most meals. Many start and end their day with it. Rice is the basis of the national dish, nasi lemak.

So when Prime Minister Najib Razak said this past week that he preferred quinoa because it was “better than rice,” he stirred up a tempest in a lunch bowl.

Opponents pounced and other Malaysians took to social media to fret and fume when Najib was caught saying: “I don’t eat rice. I eat quinoa. My son introduced me to it.”

Dr Mahathir Mohamad, a former prime minister who is leading the Pakatan Harapan (PH) opposition coalition in elections expected by August, took to Twitter to jeer the prime minister and to express his support for Malaysia’s traditional grain.

“I only eat local rice,” Dr Mahathir tweeted.

Another opposition leader, Lim Kit Siang, said he had never even heard of quinoa.”

*Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa; (/ˈkiːnwɑː/ or /kɪˈnoʊ.ə/, from Quechua kinwa or kinuwa) is a flowering plant in the amaranth family. It is a herbaceous annual plant grown as a grain crop primarily for its edible seeds. Quinoa is not a grass, but rather a pseudocereal botanically related to spinach and amaranth.

After harvest, the seeds are processed to remove the bitter-tasting outer seed coat. Versatile for many dishes, cooked quinoa supplies nutrient content similar to wheat and rice, such as moderate amounts of protein, dietary fiber, and minerals. Quinoa is gluten-free.

Quinoa originated in the Andean region of northwestern South America, and was domesticated 3,000 to 4,000 years ago for human consumption in the Lake Titicaca basin of Peru and Bolivia, though archaeological evidence shows livestock uses 5,200 to 7,000 years ago. Amazingly, researchers have also found that quinoa could have origins in Taiwan as well.

READ THE NEW YORK TIMES

Malaysians were not happy when Prime Minister Najib Razak said he preferred quinoa because it was “better than rice,” the national staple.

This picture of Najib Tun Razak & wife visiting Anwar Ibrahim in the hospital has quickly spread on social media, shortly after the publication on Twitter. This is the picture which shows the suffering of Anwar Ibrahim, and has shocked and sadden even hardened observers.

Shared widely on social media today.

Anyway, I dont know why people think Najib Tun Razak’s visiting of Anwar Ibrahim in the hospital is such a big deal. First they torture him, then they visit him when he is suffering. Najib should do the right thing – Free Anwar, then we all can say Najib is ikhlas, Najib is magnanimous!

Time to free Anwar Ibrahim the Prisoner of Conscience!


Since our Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak had received a US681 million donation from a Saudi prince, this story is appropriate but has no relations to the donation.

The sweeping campaign of arrests in the Saudi royal household appears to be the latest move to consolidate the power of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman 32, the favorite son and top adviser of King Salman.

Among those arrested is Prince Alwaleed, who controls the investment firm Kingdom Holding and is one of the world’s richest men, has major stakes in News Corp, Time Warner, Citigroup, Twitter, Apple, Motorola and many other well-known companies. He also controls satellite television networks watched across the Arab world. Prince Alwaleed was giving interviews to the Western news media as recently as late last month about subjects like so-called crypto currencies and Saudi Arabia’s plans for a public offering of shares in its state oil company, Aramco. He has also recently sparred publicly with President Donald J. Trump. The prince was part of a group of investors who bought control of the Plaza Hotel in New York from Mr. Trump, and he also bought an expensive yacht from him as well. But in a twitter message in 2015 the prince called Mr. Trump “a disgrace not only to the GOP but to all America.”

As powerful as the billionaire is, he is something of an outsider within the royal family — not a dissident, but an unusually outspoken figure on a variety of issues. He openly supported women driving long before the kingdom said it would grant them the right to do so, and he has long employed women in his orbit.
In 2015 he pledged to donate his fortune of $32 billion to charity after his death. It was unclear Saturday whether Saudi Arabia’s corruption committee might seek to confiscate any of his assets.

Salman’s consolidation is reminscent of Aurangazeb’s. The four sons of Shah Jahan all held governorships during their father’s reign. The emperor favoured the eldest, Dara Shukoh. This had caused resentment among the younger three, who sought at various times to strengthen alliances between themselves and against Dara. There was no Mughal tradition of primogeniture, the systematic passing of rule, upon an emperor’s death, to his eldest son. Aurangazeb in turn killed Dara Shikoh, Shah Shuja and Murad.

Aurangzeb was a notable expansionist and during his reign, the Mughal Empire reached its greatest extent, ruling over nearly all of the Indian subcontinent. During his lifetime, victories in the south expanded the Mughal Empire to 4 million square kilometres, and he ruled over a population estimated to be over 158 million subjects, with an annual yearly revenue of $450 million (more than ten times that of his contemporary Louis XIV of France), or £38,624,680 (2,879,469,894 rupees) in 1690. Under his reign, India surpassed China to become the world’s largest economy, worth over $90 billion, nearly a quarter of world GDP in 1700. The decline of the Mughal Empire began soon after he died in 1707.

Photo

Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, one of the world’s richest men, was reportedly arrested in Saudi Arabia on Saturday. Credit Ishara S.Kodikara/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

LONDON — Saudi Arabia announced the arrest on Saturday night of the prominent billionaire investor Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, plus at least 10 other princes, four ministers and tens of former ministers.

The announcement of the arrests was made over Al Arabiya, the Saudi-owned satellite network whose broadcasts are officially approved. Prince Alwaleed’s arrest is sure to send shock waves both through the Kingdom and the world’s major financial centers.

He controls the investment firm Kingdom Holding and is one of the world’s richest men, with major stakes in News Corp, Time Warner, Citigroup, Twitter, Apple, Motorola and many other well-known companies. The prince also controls satellite television networks watched across the Arab world.

The sweeping campaign of arrests appears to be the latest move to consolidate the power of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the favorite son and top adviser of King Salman.

At 32, the crown prince is already the dominant voice in Saudi military, foreign, economic and social policies, stirring murmurs of discontent in the royal family that he has amassed too much personal power, and at a remarkably young age.

The king had decreed the creation of a powerful new anti-corruption committee, headed by the crown prince, only hours before the committee ordered the arrests.

Al Arabiya said that the anticorruption committee has the right to investigate, arrest, ban from travel, or freeze the assets of anyone it deems corrupt.

The Ritz Carlton hotel in Riyadh, the de facto royal hotel, was evacuated on Saturday, stirring rumors that it would be used to house detained royals. The airport for private planes was closed, arousing speculation that the crown prince was seeking to block rich businessmen from fleeing before more arrests.

Prince Alwaleed was giving interviews to the Western news media as recently as late last month about subjects like so-called crypto currencies and Saudi Arabia’s plans for a public offering of shares in its state oil company, Aramco.

He has also recently sparred publicly with President Donald J. Trump. The prince was part of a group of investors who bought control of the Plaza Hotel in New York from Mr. Trump, and he also bought an expensive yacht from him as well. But in a twitter message in 2015 the prince called Mr. Trump “a disgrace not only to the GOP but to all America.”

Mr. Trump fired back, also on Twitter, that “Dopey Prince @Alwaleed_Talal wants to control our U.S. politicians with daddy’s money.”

As president, Mr. Trump has developed a warm, mutually supportive relationship with the ascendant crown prince, who has rocketed from near obscurity in recent years to taking control of the country’s most important functions.

Photo

At 32, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is already the dominant voice in Saudi military, foreign, economic and social policies. Credit Fayez Nureldine/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

But his swift rise has also divided Saudis. Many applaud his vision, crediting him with addressing the economic problems facing the kingdom and laying out a plan to move beyond its dependence on oil.

Others see him as brash, power-hungry and inexperienced, and they resent him for bypassing his elder relatives and concentrating so much power in one branch of the family.

At least three senior White House officials, including the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, were reportedly in Saudi Arabia last month for meetings that were undisclosed at the time.

Before sparring with Mr. Trump, Prince Alwaleed was publicly rebuffed by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, who rejected his $10 million donation for the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York because the prince had also criticized American foreign policy.

As powerful as the billionaire is, he is something of an outsider within the royal family — not a dissident, but an unusually outspoken figure on a variety of issues. He openly supported women driving long before the kingdom said it would grant them the right to do so, and he has long employed women in his orbit.

In 2015 he pledged to donate his fortune of $32 billion to charity after his death. It was unclear Saturday whether Saudi Arabia’s corruption committee might seek to confiscate any of his assets.

Saudi Arabia is an executive monarchy without a written Constitution or independent government institutions like a Parliament or courts, so accusations of corruption are difficult to evaluate. The boundaries between the public funds and the wealth of the royal family are murky at best, and corruption, as other countries would describe it, is believed to be widespread.

The arrests came a few hours after the king replaced the minister in charge of the Saudi national guard, Prince Mutaib bin Abdullah, who controlled the last of the three Saudi armed forces not yet considered to be under control of the crown prince.

The king named Crown Prince Mohammed the minister of defense in 2015. Earlier this year, the king removed Prince Mohammed bin Nayef as head of the interior ministry, placing him under house arrest and extending the crown prince’s influence over the interior ministry’s troops, which act as a second armed force.

Rumors have swirled since then that King Salman and his favorite son would soon move against Prince Mutaib, commander of the third armed force and himself a former contender for the crown.


All through childhood my mother would tell me: “You have to work hard to get whatever is in your destiny. But, remember, you can never get more than you are destined to get and never before the time that you are destined to get it.’’

I am reminded of that again as I watch Najib Tun Razak fight against his destiny to continue as Prime Minister after GE13. Perhaps it is in his destiny, perhaps not. Perhaps it could even be RAHMAN’s prophecy signifying the end of the line of Umno. But he is, at least, putting up a great fight for it and it is good to see that the man who wanted us to believe that the UMNO was a party with a difference, is himself now at the head of those differences with so many others.

However, it is satisfying to know that what we have been saying all along about Barisan National – that it is actually doing much worse than the Pakatan Rakyat despite seeming so scatter-brained and incapable of holding their act together – is now being reiterated by the grand old man Dr Mahathir. And though it might be due to the threat of losing his power as Prime Minister that might have brought forth the realisation of impending doom, it could actually be time for others within the Barisan National coalition to heed Dr Mahathir’s warning.

The party is usually better at hiding its bickering than the Pakatan Rakyat is under similar circumstances. Dr Mahathir’s latest diatribe seemed to be aimed at Najib as usual, but it is not just Dr Mahathir who is attempting to bring him down a peg or two. Muhyiddin Yassin is also sending feelers that he wants to contest for the Number One position in UMNO after this coming polls.

Now Najib himself is unable to espy the mischief afoot against him in his home town by his own men — those who claim proximity to him have already begun to work the wires to ensure that he does not win in Pekan, in the 1999 general election, dominated by Anwar’s dismissal and marked by mass defections from UMNO, Najib’s 10,793 majority in Pekan fell to just 241 votes, thanks to the postal votes he won. And the Pakatan Rakyat has, of course, opened out its arms to such backstabbers and is wholeheartedly aiding their game plan. Whether, then, Najib overcomes the image of being a coward, as Anwar has suggested, due to a refusal of a debate, remains to be seen. This is exactly what I have been saying all along about Najib — and being called all sorts of names for that observation.

Clearly, Mahathir has more friends in the UMNO than Najib does and so the orchestration has begun in preparation for polling day GE13 2013 — though, I believe, the national party leaders were waiting with bated breath for the announcement of the dissolution of parliament on April 3rd 2013 before really outing themselves. There is a whole group of anti-Najib people who despair that he might win with a small majority but the opposite is felt over at UMNO, as loud whispers points to figures and statistics, proving that neither Malaysia nor its current PM are doing as well as they pretend.

The meeting of anti-Najib heavyweights earlier this week, which openly declared war against Najib, could not have happened without some covert support from Dr Mahathir . This is an indicator that the party has clear-cut division of camps, if not a split – those for and those against getting  Najib out of Putrajaya. Ironically, those who want to confine Najib to Pekan also wish to see Pahang fall to Pakatan Rakyat GE13 for that would truly clip his wings even if he might redouble his efforts in continuing on as UMNO President , seeking a national role for himself.

As I gather from some BN leaders I spoke to, it is clear that this is what they are waiting for — and not just because it would bring back control of the four Pakatan controlled states, including Selangor. UMNO fears handing over the party nationally to Najib, yet BN seems to be simply looking forward to that very prospect. For a while, Najib’s national ascension might have cut short the ambitions of Muhudeen Yassin’s dream of becoming PM in the event of a BN victory. However, UMNO is certain that that a BN victory will never happen with Najib at the helm as they would then be the automatic beneficiaries of the consolidation of votes against the BN.

Whichever way UMNO might resolve this very real headache growing in the party, my money is on Anwar, even though I am no fan of his. I had said multiple times in my past entries that Anwar was an old fox; he would never let go and could be expected to outfox all the foxes, old and new, in both UMNO and BN. Not for nothing did Anwar toil hard to bring the Pakatan Rakyat together and cemented both PAS and DAP which are so diverse in their ethos and pathos, but today, they are able to sit together in one table and talk. Anwar has done the impossible (politically at least) and we have to accept that. Pakatan Rakyat came from nothing and is now steadily working towards the formation of a government at the Centre.

Now, for once, will destiny be on Najib’s side in this battle against the Umno leaders, against Anwar and against Dr Mahathir? There could be many twists in the tale between now and May 2013. But with friends like these in their own party, no UMNO leader — Najib or Muhideen Yassin — need enemies?

Food for thought: It was Anwar Ibrahim who said upon his dismissal in 1998  “I have been betrayed not by others but by my own  people.”