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Friday, September 2, 2011

RM24mil Rosmah ring: Utusan lied to deceive the rural Malays, says SAMM

Sulaiman Kamal | 3:30 PM | | | Best Blogger Tips

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Malaysian youth movement, Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia or SAMM, has accused the UMNO-owned Utusan newspaper of intentionally twisting the truth so as to deceive rural Malay readers about the true situation concerning a gargantuan RM24.4 million diamond allegedly brought into the country via improprer means by Rosmah Mansor, the wife of Prime Minister Najib Razak.
In a recent news report, Utusan had accused SAMM chief Badrul Hisham Shahrin of being a "coward" and for not making a report with the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission if the ring allegations were true.
This despite Badrul having lodged a report at the MACC on July 13 after receiving a tip off in mid-April that the “Natural Fancy Gray Cushion Cut Diamond” had been flow in through the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, without tax being declared.

"SAMM Johor is very disappointed over the Utusan report. They are behaving like daylight robbers," SAMM coordinator Ahmad Anwar Asyraf Ismail said in a statement.
"Does Utusan think it is Joseph Goebbels, the propaganda minister of Hitler's who was famous for his theory "The Big Lie", which functions on the basis that if you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes accepted as the truth."
Operations manager grilled till 3am
Lats week, Badrul also revealed that MACC officers had grilled an operations manager A Krishnan at the KLIA until 3am over the ring. The news immediately prompted concern whether the MACC was investigating Badrul's allegation or if it was trying to coerce Krishnan into some form of false confessions.
However, screenshots of the Customs database documenting the import of the ring have flooded the Internet, making it impossible for Customs to credibly deny that such an item had indeed been brought in.
Rosmah has refused to directly deny that the ring was hers, only condemning public criticism of her lavish spending as slander. However, PM Najib has refuted the allegations on her behalf, saying he was surprised at such rumours which even appeared in Indonesia's top newspaper Kompas.
Like his wife, Najib also failed to gain traction with the public. The clumsy efforts made by the UMNO media and his advisors to cover up the matter has actually compounded public opinion that the ring was indeed Rosmah's. Malaysia's first couple are known for their lavish lifestyle and have been rebuked through the years for spending public money on personal events.
Throughout coffee shops in the nation, there is also talk that the ring was part of their daughter Nooryana's dowry, and a special gift to Rosmah from Nooryana's fabulously wealthy mother-in-law, Maira Nazarbayev, who has been accused of having connections to the Russian Mafia.
Political price to pay for mimicking Imelda
Indeed, the complex and heady lifestyle of the Malaysian first family, reminiscent of the wild spending sprees of Imelda Marcos in the 70s, have dented Najib's political credibility in no small amount. A recent opinion showed his approval rating has fallen to 59 per cent from 65 per cent three months ago.
The plunge in popularity is an ominous signal for his UMNO party, and steps are already afoot to dislodge him as party president in favour of his deputy, Muhyiddin Yassin.
Meanwhile, sources telld that a fed-up Badrul may soon send a reminder to the MACC for an update on the latest status of his complaint.
"This will show once and for all that Badrul lodged the first report in good faith and gave time to the MACC to respond. That they didin't would signify an improper willingness to help the Najibs cover up the matter," PKR veteran Eddie Wong told Malaysia Chronicle.

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