Will Shahrizat expose help end corruption? Or will it be just another rib-tickler that titillates the middle class for a few weeks and is then forgotten? Will politics remain Malaysia’s biggest business by far?
The government is not likely to get its money back from the National Feedlot Corporation (NFC) even if it wins a legal suit against the latter, PKR director of strategy Rafizi Ramli said today.
Don’t be too optimistic. Politicians of every party love slinging mud at rivals: as good businessmen, they hope this will improve their market share. But will they cooperate in closing down the business altogether and moving to a less lucrative one? I doubt it. Even if we were to stretch our imagination beyond breaking point, we would be hard put to grant Shahrizat at least the benefit of the doubt.
And furthermore, she has done nothing in the matter of the Penan young girls and women having been raped by employees of logging companies other than to confirm that the dastardly acts have indeed been committed.
But if all that is not enough, the plaintiff has also illustrated her arrogance and a quite unladylike character by pulling up her ‘baju’ sleeves to indicate readiness to thrash the living daylight out of her opponents.
Your Honour, if I may address the bench, I submit that the plaintiff’s testimonies are totally unbelievable, and that she has extraordinarily evil intentions despite her propensity for portraying of saintliness with her white apparel covering almost her entire person and performing of the ‘umrah’ more often than you blink in the same corresponding period.
It boggles the imagination that those who were once senior members of the cabinet such as Mahathir and Rafidah would have been influenced by the allegations, directly made or implied, of the respondents if such claims were implausible.
Further, the plaintiff’s implication that she was a responsible wife, mother, woman and leader is a complete contradiction of her own statement previously made that she was not aware of how her husband had obtained the loan of RM250 million – an amount not to be sneezed at, you would doubtless agree – nor of what her husband and children were up to in their daily lives.
The negativism is all too pervasive and it’s only getting worse. More people are asking: why should we vote? Showcasing the corrupt and pronouncing them guilty in public will do little good; it primarily serves as retribution. If any good has to come out of this campaign, there has to be a huge infusion of positivism. Instead of stalling everything, the campaign has to look at means to get the system moving in the right direction.
There has to be a parallel, and more powerful, movement at the grassroots to identify the good people in the system and encourage them. It may be a good idea for Barisan to publish a list of clean and efficient public servants, especially at village and ward levels. It is more important to bringthem onto the stage and let the world know the enormous amount good they have done to the society.
Or else PKR director of strategy Rafizi Ramli, risks being branded
will probably find middle-class interest waning if he makes mass exposures of politicians of all parties. The public is cynical and fickle, and has a limited attention span. It likes a scam with a star celebrity, one that can be spun out in installments, with new revelations providing fresh titillation day after day. This was true of Bofors, 2G and coal allotments. It is also true of cowgate.
But if different allegations are leveled at a dozen politicians, TV anchors and the middle class will suffer from data overload, and their eyes will glaze. This happened earlier when Team Hazare demanded an immediate probe into charges against 15 ministers (including the Prime Minister), plus the fast-tracking of criminal cases against sundry MPs. The public could not digest so much information, and failed to get excited about it. Hopefully, Barisan has learned from this, and will space out accusations against others.
But even if he exposes goons in all parties, will this end corruption? No, because that is possible only with major reforms of the police, judiciary and prosecutors. As of now, cases take so long that the accused is likely to die of old age before being convicted beyond appeals. yet the Supreme Court recently held that the system could not be blamed for the delay!
– if not already — as another politician who has his own axe to grind.Outrageous? Yes, but when the judicial system cannot convict crooks, then crooks will flourish in politics and much else. Systemic change is possible only through radical reform of the police and judiciary to ensure rapid investigation and conviction. But this does not make for popular TV, so neither Kejriwal nor TV anchors focus on this. Instead they focus on the latest titillation.
Ex-minister Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, we cannot believe that you are blaming PKR director of strategy Rafizi Ramli and Wanita chief Zuraida Kamaruddin as the cause of poisoning the minds of BN veterans such as former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad and former Wanita Umno head Rafidah Aziz.
Silly, arrogant woman. This is another example of the guilty blaming the messenger for publishing the message.She doesn’t/didn’t deserve to be a serving member of the government – she wasn’t even elected. Her tenure had expired anyway, so she wasn’t “forced to resign”.All the documents on the scandal that have been published appear to be original and tell most of the story. Is she is saying that it is okay to cheat the country out of RM250 million and not be held accountable? Shahrizat Abdul Jalil has raised the tone of the slanging match to a new high. Anti-corruption activists say that more players would be dragged into media conferences, presumably for people to take the final call on redefining political morality in UMNO. Politicians — willy-nilly declared corrupt, and therefore guilty — have their backs to the wall, fighting back to retrieve their remaining reputation.As new acts unfold on the political theatre, we are left with more questions than answers. What is the stake for us, the common people? Are we mere spectators? In what way do we benefit? Will campaign translate into votes? Or, are we staring at a mirage, where the political slate has been wiped clean of all dirt? according to you, everyone else in this world is at fault except you and your family.
Your family benefited RM250 million from the National Feedlot project. The loan was not used for its intended purpose, and this was highlighted by the auditor-general because it is public money.
When your family uses public money, it is obvious that you and your family will be under public scrutiny. If indeed what Zuraida and Rafizi did was wrong, then by similar logic the report by the auditor-general is also wrong.The problem is it was your family who had taken the RM250 million and had nothing productive to show for it other than a list of high market properties that has nothing to do with the cow business. We are supposedly better informed about the evil called corruption and the corrosive effect it has on the nation. But, has anything changed on the ground in the past one year? No. Examples are aplenty. How obstinate can one get? It must be 50 years of BN rule that makes its members oblivious to wrongdoings, corruption, who despite this can shamelessly maintain a straight face and put the blame on the people who expose their misdeeds.
Datuk Seri Shahrizat Jalil today told the High Court here today that she has “never been confrontational” and is “kind”, but said this did not mean she is weak.
The Wanita Umno chief was testifying during cross-examination by defence lawyer Ranjit Singh in her defamation suit against PKR’s Rafizi Ramli and Zuraida Kamaruddin over their statements in relation to the National Feedlot Centre (NFC) scandal.
“I’ve never been confrontational,” Shahrizat, a former minister for Women, Family and Community Development, said.
“My politics has been more welfare politics,” she said, adding that she enjoys serving the poor, women and disabled.
“I’m kind and mindful of anything I say about my party or the opposition,” she continued, noting that a check of her records would show that she did not make defamatory statements.
“I check my words and believe that is what we should practise,” the Barisan Nasional (BN) Wanita chief said.
She said she was not a pushover and that she did not want people to consider her weak even though she was kind.
“I’m not weak especially in seeking the truth,” she told Ranjit.
Ranjit had asked her why she had said “don’t anyone think I’m weak” when addressing her Wanita Umno during the party’s general assembly on November 30, 2011.
He was quizzing Shahrizat on the contents of her speech, in a bid to prove the PKR duo’s defence of fair comment.
PKR has repeatedly attacked the NFC project with various allegations surrounding the “loans” of over RM84 million given by the NFC to companies owned by Shahrizat’s family, including RM13.8 million for the purchase of two luxury condominiums in Bangsar.
Shahrizat, who is the wife of National Feedlot Corporation (NFCorp) chairman Datuk Seri Mohamad Salleh Ismail, had been linked to the scandal by PKR because of her husband’s position and their three children’s directorships in the same firm.
Mohamed Salleh was charged with criminal breach of trust and violating the Companies Act in relation to RM49 million in federal funds given to NFCorp on March 12.
The 64-year-old was also charged under the Penal Code relating to CBT for misappropriating RM9,758,140 from NFCorp’s funds to purchase two condominium units at the One Menerung complex in Bangsar for the National Meat and Livestock Corporation (NMLC) on December 1 and December 4, 2009.
He was also charged with transferring RM40 million of NFCorp’s funds to the NMLC between May 6 and November 16, 2009.
He was further charged in both cases for using the said funds without any approval from the company’s annual general meeting, which is an offence under the Companies Act.
If found guilty, he faces between two and 20 years’ jail, whipping, and a fine for the offences under the Penal Code.
Mohamad Salleh also faces a five-year jail term or RM30,000 fine for the charges proffered under the Companies Act.
For BN, it is as if corruption and wrongdoings are their entitlement and nobody can question them. If I misuse RM250 million of a company’s fund, can I blame and sue the auditor and shareholders for exposing my misdeeds and sacking me?We are supposedly better informed about the evil called corruption and the corrosive effect it has on the nation. But, has anything changed on the ground in the past one year? No. Examples are aplenty. If the two PKR leaders are wrong, then in the same vein, the auditor-general is also wrong for the exposure. Why don’t you sue the auditor-general, Mahathir, the whole cabinet and the entire Malaysian citizenry as well?Moreover, where is your resignation letter? If I remembered correctly nobody caused your resignation because you did not resign, but your senatorship was merely not renewed by BN (and that is not under the control of the two PKR leaders) after your term had finished.If anybody is to be sued, it’s BN for not renewing your senatorship