"Clare's dogged (and to some, more that a little annoying) persistence and an incredible nose for the fishy stuff, uncovered the heist of the century.  The explosive exposés  rocked the nation, and precipitated the fall of the Malaysian government for the first time in 60 years."
		
Tony Pua, Member of Parliament for Damansara, Malaysia

Investigating the deforestation of Sarawak, Borneo, and the dispossession of its people, journalist Clare Rewcastle Brown followed a trail of corruption that led her to the heart of Malaysian politics and to Prime Minister Najib Razak himself. Determined that the public should know the truth, she started a blog, which became Malaysia's go-to news outlet for information that the government was trying to suppress – and whistleblowers wanted to get out. She was soon running a radio station too...

Full story in The Sarawak Report book to be launched on September 8, 2018

Talkback

He Knows How It's Done!

Buoyed by BN twin victories in the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak is now setting his eyes on recapturing Selangor from Pakatan Harapan.

A jubilant Najib said this to some 250 supporters gathered at the Umno Sungai Besar headquarters to celebrate the victory of BN’s candidate Budiman Mohd Zohdi.

“With this victory in Sungai Besar, it can be our starting point for a renewed vibrant spirit.

“The spirit for us to attack! For us to recapture Selangor,” he declared to cheers from the crowd.

Our comment

Jail the opposition leader and use your excessive powers and money to swing the margins.

Encourage divisive religious extremism and racial disharmony.

Abuse your total control of the media and exploit hopelessness.  Gosh, and you win a few hundred more votes than the combined opposition you have succeeded in dividing.

Then pat yourself on the back for a fair election win and laugh that now you are the Idi Amin of Malaysia!

Najib should call that General Election now… before the full details of his thefts officially come out and even the greediest British businessmen will have to admit the proof is staring them down.

It Could Be You, Najib!

Malaysia’s Senate should reject the government’s proposed legal changes that would undermine the rights of criminal suspects, Human Rights Watch said today. Amendments to the country’s Code of Criminal Procedure passed the lower house of parliament on May 19, 2016, and will be debated by the Senate in the session starting on June 13.

The proposed amendments are being made at a time when the government of Prime Minister Najib Razak has intensified its crackdown on criticism by civil society activists, Human Rights Watch said. The code changes would limit the discretion of judges to impose more lenient sentences, allow for previously inadmissible testimony by unidentified witnesses and written testimony, and allow the denial of bail for a broader range of political and other offences.

“The proposed amendments are part of a troubling trend of the Malaysian government undermining the right to a fair trial during periods of political turmoil,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia Director at Human Rights Watch. “The Senate should reject amendments that undermine the rights of the accused or judges’ authority to protect rights.”

Our comment

Najib, who gloried in portraying himself as a progressive reformer when he came into office, has spent the last year attempting to strip away everyone else’s basic rights in Malaysia, in order to protect himself from his own criminal actions.

As a political leader he has shown not one shred of concern for his duties towards those who placed their trust in him: perhaps because he knows they didn’t; the opposition won most of the votes at the last election, despite his massive cheating and bribery.

Najib is cementing a dictatorship, where protection of the individual against arbitrary action by those who have grasped the levers of authority is being swept away.  Civilised societies have learnt to value such protections and to evolve basic individual rights, not least because none of us can be confident that one day it might not be ourselves or a loved one, who unexpectedly falls foul of those in power.

Indeed, it might be Najib.  He has done enough wrong to find himself in very hot water some day. He might wish then that he had kept those basic rights in situ.

Bribe Minister

Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak teases that he may donate to the Ma’muniah mosque in Sungai Besar after the polls.

This would be in addition to the RM500,000 Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has pledged for the mosque. “If you want to add some more, come see me after the elections,” Najib says in his speech after a breaking fast.

Our comment

Malaysians have become wearily used to Najib Razak’s blatant public vote buying.

So, foreign businessmen and their political clients ought to stop pretending he is not a proven crook. He condemns himself through his own mouth, quite apart from the proof of his bank balances, which he also cannot deny.

What ought to concern the voters most is where next does Najib plan to plunder, in order to make these dirty pay-offs, now that so many of his foreign bank accounts have been frozen?

Digging A Deeper Hole

The Wall Street Journal’s allegations against Malaysia have been proven to be lies, this time by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, said Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s press aide.

Tengku Shariffuddin Tengku Ahmad noted how the publication alleged that Goldman Sachs wired US$3 billion in proceeds of a 1MDB bond issuance to BSI Bank in Singapore, and that some of these funds were later transferred to the prime minister.

However, he said the Monetary Authority of Singapore revealed that no bank in Singapore received the US$3 billion wire transfer from Goldman Sachs in relation to the bond issuance for 1MDB.

“Despite the gravity of their allegations, the WSJ gave no evidence at all to support their claims – as is now standard process in their Malaysia reporting.

“In a cowardly tactic to avoid being sued, the WSJ attributes all its allegations to anonymous sources, such as ‘people familiar with the matter’ and unnamed ‘investigators’,” he added in a media statement.

Our comment

This spokesman might have done better to wait before barking, given that his own boss has himself issued so little information to explain exactly where 1MDB’s money disappeared to – or how a billion dollars ended up in his own account.

Frankly, such is the lack of transparency over 1MDB, people have been justified in speculating the worst; and when evidence emerged that the worst had indeed occurred this Prime Minister has not dared to test the facts in court.

So, his spokespeople should not try to make hay out of small details, which journalists may have got wrong as they attempt to tease the truth from a massive cover-up, because, as in this case, the truth can turn out to have been even worse than originally reported!

The minor error related to which branch of BSI bank received the $3 billion.  It turned out to be the Swiss Headquarters rather than Singapore, which is even more damaging for the bank, which has been trying to contain its involvement in the scandal to its Singapore operations (now closed down).

Najib’s spokesman has compounded matters by further alleging that the reason his boss can’t sue the WSJ is because the WSJ has not revealed its sources, which is ridiculous.

If the WSJ was publishing untruths it would be the easiest thing in the world for Najib to demonstrate this was the case, by bringing the true facts before the courts and issuing proper company accounts.

If he has nothing to hide, why so much hidden?

 

Lying Lester!

Former Sarawak Report journalist Lester Melanyi (pix) has penned a book on an alleged plot to topple Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

The book is scheduled to hit the streets by October this year.

The book would carry his account of working with Sarawak Report editor Clare Rewcastle-Brown, he told Bernama in an interview recently.

He claimed that Rewcastle-Brown had collaborated with certain politicians in Malaysia to use Sarawak Report as a platform to topple Najib.

Our comment

Lying Lester Melanyi has never written a word for Sarawak Report.

He signed up as a volunteer for the separate Iban/Malay radio team, Radio Free Sarawak for a very few months in 2011, but was described by other volunteers as lazy and worse than useless, so the team did not ask him to stay.

Najib’s propagandists are welcome to waste their money on him, because no one believes a word of his inconsistent nonsense.

Preventative Measures Needed Against Upstarts In Uniforms

Immigration director-general Sakib Kusmi says he is empowered by the law to decide whether or not government critics can leave the country.

Thus, he said, the ban list was based on his own discretion, as well as the advice of other enforcement agencies.

“For example, if the police say someone is dangerous, even though it (the matter) has not gone to court yet, we can take action,” he said when met at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport today.

He was commenting further on his previous remarks that critics of the government would not be allowed to leave the country….

Sakib defended the barring of critics as a preventive measure.

“We don’t want to act only after something happens,” he said without elaborating.

He also said there was a difference between criticising the government and insulting it.

“As long you have no intention to be radical, there’s no problem… You can criticise, but it must be positive criticism.

“Not criticism saying this person is no good. Some don’t even criticise but insult, that is worse.”

However, he denied that this was politicking

Our comment

This chap in a uniform, hired by the Rakyat, is exceeding his powers.

In fact, he doesn’t appear to understand his powers, let alone half the things he is talking about.

He is, therefore, far more dangerous a character to the safety of individuals and the state than all the people he is arbitrarily trying to shut in and shut out of the country.

If ‘preventative action’ is needed it should be against him, in order to stop him from shooting from the hip at anyone he personally decides has produced criticism that he has concluded is not ‘positive’ criticism, but negative.

As if he knew one from the other, given that the distinction is subjective.

Someone should take legal action against this fellow for assuming that his job in overseeing orderly immigration procedures is a way of harassing upright citizens, who might happen to disagree with his boss.

The Usual Insults From RPK

Raja Petra wrote, “The non-Muslim Chinese and Indians may have earned the right to call themselves Malaysian citizens but that does not mean they have also earned the right to tell Muslims how they should practice Islam.

“Andy Yong needs to do a reality check and not assume that his Malaysian citizenship means he can define Islam. Islam is defined by the Quran and not by people like Andy Yong.”

“What is he trying to prove?” retorted Yong, a lawyer.

“First of all, I have never attempted to define Islam, but the constitutional aspect of it.

“What I explained was it is inevitable that if Hadi’s bill comes into force, it will affect the non-Muslims as well,” he said…..

He was responding to the article titled ‘Chinese should stop trying to prove they are stupid’…

Our comment

This blogger’s present trademark is to insult the Chinese and other non-Malays, which is particularly sad since he is married to a Chinese.

However, his own credentials are shaky when claiming to speak for Malays.

His mother was British and he took up his right to citizenship and a UK passport when he fell foul of libel law in Malaysia (and became bankrupt) and fled abroad.

Under Malaysian legislation prohibiting dual citizenship this nullifies his right to a Malay passport.

So, RPK is a foreigner too.

Grades of Intelligence

Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman Hasan Arifin today denied The Wall Street Journal’s report claiming that the Bank Negara letter proves Good Star Limited was owned by tycoon Low Taek Jho, or better known as Jho Low.

Hasan said this was because Bank Negara Malaysia had stated that the information provided to the PAC was ‘intelligence grade’.

“The PAC is not an intelligence body and the information received must be verified and true.

“Because the information was intelligence grade, the PAC cannot include the information (in its final report) as it would contradict our duties and responsibilities, as well as could create prejudice against various parties,” said the Rompin MP in a statement.

He added that Bank Negara had also concluded its investigations on 1MDB and issued an administrative compound, which had been settled.

Our comment

Malaysians can conclude Arafin's own grade of intelligence, in that he appears to think the rest of them are sub-70 to accept such nonsense.

Najib Should Be Wary Of Hudud

Yesterday, after chairing the Umno supreme council meeting, Najib had told reporters that the uproar over the Hudud Bill was a misunderstanding and that he had clarified to the BN component parties.

Hadi’s Bill was not about hudud, he had explained, and it was merely to enhance the punishments the Syariah Courts can mete out.

Wong said most of the non-Muslim BN leaders in Peninsular Malaysia – except a small minority – will accept whatever explanation given by Najib as they cannot survive without BN patronage.

Meanwhile, he said, East Malaysian BN politicians who are not from Umno, will downplay the issue by saying hudud is a Peninsular Malaysia problem.

Our comment

Najib has shown himself willing to do what it takes to court PAS leaders into joining BN.

However, he should surely be wary of ‘enhancing punishments’ under Hudud.

After all, with the present news coming out from all directions, he himself would stand in danger of losing both hands for thieving and possibly other bits of himself too.

Therefore, he would personally do well to remain with the more modern and moderate penal system contained in Malaysia’s existing constitution, rather than encouraging the introduction of ancient bloody-thirsty rituals from Arabia.

Biggest Thief Of Them All - Yet Najib Remains In Office!

Switzerland will implement a new law in July to help seize and repatriate illicit wealth parked in its banks by foreign dictators, the government has said.

The move is aimed at helping Switzerland and its wealth management industry shake off their image as a secretive haven for ill-gotten riches.

This issue was in the news again this week when the Monetary Authority of Singapore ordered the closure of Swiss private bank BSI’s operations locally, and Swiss prosecutors began criminal proceedings against BSI in the biggest international crackdown on financial entities dealing with a scandal-hit Malaysian government fund…..

Three ordinances cover assets previously seized as a precaution from former presidents Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia, Hosni Mubarak of Egypt and Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine and their inner circles, although all three expire early next year….he government had blocked about US$650 million (S$895 million) in the case of Egypt, 60 million Swiss francs (S$83 million) in the case of Tunisia and about US$70 million regarding Ukraine…

 

Our comment

It is good that Switzerland is moving to toughen its laws against kleptocrat looters.

Likewise, David Cameron of the UK warned at his anti-corruption conference this month that “if you want to steal money from your country and invest it in mine I will seize it and give it back to your country”.

Sarawak Report has already reported that Sabah’s Musa Aman stole some US$100 million from timber kickbacks, which were parked via HSBC and UBS Bank in his Zurich accounts – which is a case still pending in Switzerland.

Sarawak’s Taib has money and assets all over the world.

Now their Federal boss Najib is exposed for siphoning no less than US$7 billion from Malaysia… much of it now held in Swiss and other foreign accounts – also in AmBank, which is controlled by ANZ Australia.

It makes him a world record thief compared to the relatively minor sums stolen from the already deposed former leaders mentioned by the Swiss in their statement.