By Wong Choon Mei (Suara Keadilan)
Malaysian blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin has hit the headlines again with a much-awaited revelation that it was the No 2 man in the Special Branch of the Military Intelligence, no less, who told him that First Lady Rosmah Mansor was at the scene of the murder of Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaariibuu.
Indeed, French newspaper Liberation had previously reported that a jealous Rosmah refused to pay the beautiful and pregnant 28-year old Altantuya a cent of the US$500,000 commission due to her for her role as a go-between in Malaysia’s purchase of three high-tech submarines from shipbuilder Armaris .
The deal had been sanctioned by Prime Minister Najib Razak during his time in the defence ministry. Both the 55-year old Najib and his 58-year old wife Rosmah have repeatedly denied allegations that they were involved with Altantuya.
But Najib’s close associate, Razak Baginda, who allegedly was his main intermediary for the 114 million euros commission (about RM540 million) paid by Armaris, was charged with abetting Altantuya’s murder although he was later acquitted.
Speculation remains rife that Altantuya, a widely-travelled lady who speaks four foreign languages including Russian, was Najib’s mistress at one time before she became Razak Baginda’s lover, which Razak has confirmed although he denies Najib knew her.
Two special police officers – part of Najib’s security detail – have since been found guilty and sentenced to hang for the killing.
Nevertheless, the case remains vivid in the minds of Malaysians and many abroad because the key question has still not been answered : But who ordered the killing?
Najib sent an ex-minister, JJ, to offer me money to shut up
In Raja Petra’s latest blog posting, he also said Najib instructed a former minister Jamaluddin Jarjis to offer him money – a monthly allowance of RM30,000 – to stop writing about Altantuya. Jamaluddin also offered to pay all his legal costs.
“JJ told me that Najib had asked him to meet me to make a deal. I asked him whether Najib really knows we are meeting and whether he had endorsed or sanctioned the meeting and JJ replied that our meeting was on Najib’s instructions,” Raja Petra said.
Raja Petra, also known as RPK, is Malaysia’s most popular blogger. Despite his often tongue-in-cheek writing style and controversial political discourse, he is also a widely respected activist, playing a key role in the 2008 general election where Malaysians voted in their first significant opposition.
RPK said he checked the information about Rosmah given to him by Lt Kol Azmi Zainal Abidin, the “number two in the Special Branch of the Military Intelligence”, before deciding to use it.
He also asked Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim and Najib’s party colleague – Umno MP for Gua Musang Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah – if Azmi was a reliable source.
“Anwar replied you should never trust anyone with your life. However, Lt Kol Azmi’s information is very reliable. I also asked John Pang, who also works for Ku Li, to check with Ku Li whether Lt Kol Azmi’s information is reliable. I told John what Lt Kol Azmi told us and asked him to inform Ku Li about it. John confirmed that Lt Kol Azmi told Ku Li the same thing and that the information is reliable,” RPK wrote.
The government has charged RPK for criminal defamation against Rosmah, her former aide Lt Kol Norhayati Hassan and her husband Lt Kol Aziz Buyong.
RPK was also charged for sedition for publishing the article “Let’s send the Altantuya murderers to hell”. He jumped bail on April 23, failing to turn up in court, saying that if he had attended the hearing, he would been detained under Malaysia’s infamous Internal Security Act and send to prison immediately.