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Sunday, April 15, 2012

AdilanClub : Real or act? Nazri offers to give up seat in GE-13 as scandal over son heats up

Sulaiman Kamal | 7:22 PM | | | Best Blogger Tips

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Nazri Aziz, accused of trying to cover up his son's recalcitrant behavior, has hinted he may give way to young blood at the 13th general election that Prime Minister Najib Razak is expected to call this year.

"I have been a minister for a long time, 13 years, as deputy minister 5 years. I believe in continuity. I am already 58 years old and have been in service for a while," Nazri, the minister in the PM's department and Padang Rengas MP, was reported as telling Utusan.

"If the Prime Minister wants to replace me, that's fine. I have already spoken to my division but they nominated me again. Give chance to the new generation, what's important is that we don't fight among ourselves."

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Making the right noises for Najib and for himself

Nazri is also the first senior leader to respond following a statement from Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan that Umno headquarters has received nomination lists from all branches.

However, Adnan's reminder that "the names of candidates in the lists submitted to the leadership is not final"  sent a shiver down Umno, the country's largest political party and which has ruled Malaysia for 55 years.

"I don't think Nazri will be dropped. But certainly, he is making the right noises for Najib. There are also many quarters who believe Nazri should quit even without GE-13 coming. His son's case is a blemish for Umno and BN - that's for sure," PKR MP for Batu Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.

"As the de-facto law minister, it is a disgrace that instead of setting an example and insisting on a public inquiry, Nazri is keeping quiet while the police insist his son did nothing wrong although this conflicts with the victim's police statement and the CCTV footage,"

Surely not like father, like son?

Indeed, Nazri  - who is also in charge of Parliament -  shocked the nation with his initial comments that belied a 'couldn't-care-less' attitude.

Nazri told the press he could not be "responsible" for the actions of his son, fueling public anger at the way his son had allegedly bullied a security guard.

"I think this is a most irresponsible statement to make. How a child turns out is a reflection of the teachings of his parents and culture," Tan Sri Robert Phang, a prominent citizen and civil society leader, had told Malaysia Chronicle.

Nazri's son, Nedim, got into trouble last month for allegedly beating up a condominium security guard who had asked for identification documents when Nedim and his body wanted to visit a resident in the building.

The nation was shocked not only by the unruly behavior but also by news that Nedim had driven a Porsche while his bodyguard accompanied him in another luxury MPV, a Toyota Velfire.

There are now growing calls for the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission to probe how Nedim managed to become so wealthy and did he leverage off his father's connections to get his money? But like the police, the MACC appears to be closing an eye to the case.

Repeat offender?

To make it worse, the condo incident is not the first time that Nedim has been at the center of an assault scandal. In 2004, he was accused of being part of group that killed law student Darren Kang. The case also created a public backlash and the Umno-BN government was accused of covering up the murder.

"We call upon the police to explain why this case (condo incident) was classified as the minor offense of affray under s.160 Penal Code, when in fact the security supervisor had clearly stated in his police report that he had been assaulted and force had been used upon him. The CCTV footage now backs up his allegations," said human right lawyer and PKR vice president N Surendran.

"We call upon the police to re-classify this case as assault, use of criminal force and causing of hurt under Penal Code sections 321, 350 and 351.We call upon the Inspector General of Police to immediately transfer this assault case from Brickfields police district headquarters to an independent investigation team."

Justice for the guard and Darren

Sad to say, the IGP's response was a rather fatuous call to the public to believe in the authorities and not be biased against cops.
"In the last 10 years, you’ve seen how efficient and professional the authorities have been. Let’s not be prejudiced against the authorities,” Ismail Omar told a press conference last week.

However, given that this is the second incident involving Nedim, it is unlikely that activists and opposition politicians will let him get away this time.

Like the RM250million NFC debacle involving former Umno minister Shahrizat Jalil and her family, Nazri's son and the possible corruption behind his family's wealth looks set to be a continuing saga.

Lastly, there should also be some justice for the condo guard and for 23-year-old Darren, whose untimely murder must surely count as one of the most undeserved deaths.


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