The current political situation in Malaysia can only be described as fragile at best, with the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic coming at a strange time for us politically. While the jury is still out on whether or not the timing of it all played to Perikatan Nasional’s advantage, it’s become clear that the it has certainly played to the advantage of those caught up in the 1MDB scandal.
It’s hard to swallow the thought of a certain Zahid Hamidi, someone who’s facing 47 charges in court, not only giving his two cents on how the country should be run but also being in the running to be the 9th Prime Minister of Malaysia. It seems that in the shadow of the Covid-19 pandemic, Hamidi-led UMNO has only grown stronger.
It was plain to see what influence UMNO still has when Hamidi’s daughter got away with a mere slap on the wrist for flouting MCO rules, but it’s become even clearer now that Riza Aziz’s money laundering case has come to a settlement.
It was just last week that Najib’s stepson was cleared from five counts of money-laundering over US$248 million, which was misappropriated from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). As to how on earth this could happen, our current Attorney General, Tan Sri Idrus Harun claims to have been acting on the advice of former AG Tan Sri Tommy Thomas.
The problem here is that Thomas has come out and claimed that he would never have approved of what he calls a ‘sweetheart deal’ for Aziz.
“Since Tan Sri Idrus is at pains to emphasise the weight he gave to my so called ‘agreement in principle’ (which itself is a fiction), let me state publicly that I would have never sanctioned this deal.
“I would have lost all credibility in the eyes of the people of Malaysia whom I endeavoured to serve as public prosecutor to the best of my ability, honestly and professionally if I had approved it. I would have betrayed the trust the Prime Minister and the PH government had reposed in me,” he said in a statement today.
He also added that Aziz is essentially getting credit for returning monies that are not his. His offer of returning several million ringgit to the Malaysian government would’ve happened with or without Aziz, given that the money is basically DOJ seized assets, which in any event would be returned by the DOJ to Malaysia.
It’s bad enough that this isn’t the government that the rakyat voted for, but the blatant abuse of power here is just insulting. It’s one thing to install a backdoor government, but to get in the way of justice by allowing those implicated in Malaysia’s worst political scandal to walk away scot free is just downright unacceptable.
What goes on behind the scenes is anyones guess, but with Thomas coming out and saying what he said, along with everything else that’s been going on lately, it’s hard not to speculate the worst.