|The three accused arriving at court (photo: AFP)|
|Sirul Azhar (left) & Azilah Hadri|
Sirul Azhar stated in his police statement that he was recruited by Azilah to assist in “taking care” of a nuisance named Aminah alias Altantuya Shaariibuu. He even added that a cash reward of RM50,000 –100,000 was involved. I doubt Sirul knew who had made the offer, and even if he did, whatever name he mentioned would have been deleted from his statement by police officers eager to protect the VVIPs in Umno Baru.
'Taken care' of at least 6 others
Nobody in their right mind would confess to cold-blooded murder - more so when the victim is unknown to them and happens to be a pretty woman given the brush-off by some well-heeled and politically connected casanova. Altantuya was obviously not a hardcore criminal. Who would have had the heart to shoot her twice in the head point blank even as she was pleading for her life – and that of her unborn child? Whatever crime she might have committed, blackmail for example, she deserved her day in court. Every policeman knows that – or should in any case.
|Altantuya Shaariibuu in Europe with Razak Baginda|
Political masters must take the ultimate responsibility
|"Could do with more kickback"|
We must not forget that somebody in the Immigration Department deliberately deleted from the computer database all entry records of Altantuya Shaariibuu and her companions. Who would have the authority to order such a criminal act? In October 2006 when the drama unfolded the Ministry of Home Affairs (which controls the Immigration Department) had recently been restructured and, although Mohd Radzi Sheikh Ahmad was nominally in charge, it was a period of confusion without clear lines of command.
There must be someone very high in the power hierarchy to accomplish these grievous misdeeds without a hitch (almost). Who does all the evidence point to? Who is the common denominator in this complex web of intrigue?
Was Rosmah really not at the scene? Or was she?
|Altantuya Shaariibuu (6 May 1978 – 20 October 2006)|
Same goes for the uniformed personnel involved in the case. Musa Safri may have been guilty of abetting a serious crime, but as a typical Malay police officer whose loyalty to his Tuan Besar superseded his duty as a public servant, he would have received a measure of sympathy had he confessed his role and cleared the path for justice to be served. Capt. Azilah and Sirul were clearly implicated, via Sirul’s confession as well as the detailed statutory declaration signed by private investigator Balasubramaniam a/l Perumal. However, their role was essentially to carry out somebody else’s dirty work.
|Raja Petra Kamarudin|
RPK subsequently retracted his statutory declaration in April 2011 in a heavily edited interview with TV3, a government-friendly station, explaining that he cannot be certain if what he heard was actually true. His excuse was that he felt it was his duty as a citizen to make public what he had been told in confidence. Others saw it as a clue that RPK might have been instigated into filing his June 2008 declaration by factions focused on derailing Najib Razak’s prime ministerial aspirations.
Who has been leaking the info?
Three names immediately spring to mind: Mahathir Mohamad, whose primary goal is to ensure that his youngest son, Mukhriz, eventually becomes prime minister; Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, who has been eyeing the PM’s post since the mid-1980s; and Muhyiddin Yassin, Najib’s deputy, who certainly wouldn’t mind a shot at taking over as Top Gun.
While an in-depth inquiry into the Altantuya murder would have revealed the fact that the Scorpene submarine scam was first mooted in 2002, during Mahathir’s tenure, Najib Razak would definitely be implicated as he was then Mahathir’s defence minister.
It is public knowledge that Najib Razak has always had an eye for beautiful women. This weakness is every public figure’s Achilles’ Heel – especially in a political jungle acrawl with hidden predators and a culture supercharged with hypocrisy and false piety.
Hotbed of intrigue
|Dr Shaariibuu Setev, father of the murdered girl|
Umno Baru has sunk up to its tall songkok in a quagmire of deceit and a conspiracy of silence. While some may be happy to see Najib and Rosmah brought down and taken off the game board, there are others who fear losing power completely in the event of an ugly leadership tussle. They would rather serve a tainted leader who can offer them perks – than a clean one who might immediately sack them for incompetence and greed.
A nation that closes its eye to cold-blooded murder
|In happier days: Altantuya with her firstborn|
Since the government is supposed to represent the whole nation, every Malaysian will suffer the same curse – until we reclaim our collective conscience and our pride as citizens of a nation gone horribly wrong. Is that what we deserve after 56 years of nationhood – to be seen as a gigantic crime syndicate of congenital liars, hypocrites, thieves, rapists, and murderers?
[From Malaysia Chronicle, 28 October 2013. First posted 13 January 2014, reposted 18 October 2014]