Monday, 1 November 2010

The Submarine Scandal and the Altantuya Murder

Cynthia Gabriel

(Note : This article was presented in "Fascist Tendency of UMNO Regime” organised by Working Committee of FOS Johor on 17th Oct 2010.)

Why should Malaysians be interested?

· The defence ministry has spent more than one billion euros or about RM 7.3 billion of the rakyat’s money for the purchase of the two submarines, which are reportedly of questionable quality. The first submarine, the KD Tuanku Abdul Rahman could not sink in tropical waters, while the second arrived more than 7 months after the scheduled date of arrival.

· Adding intrigue and mystery to this controversial deal was the mysterious and horrifying death in 2006, by two policemen closely linked to then deputy prime minister Najib Razak. The deceased is a Mongolian national, believed to be a translator and mistress of Abdul Razak Baginda, a political analyst, also closely linked to najib.

· C4 explosives were said to have killed her. This explosive is not easily available in the market. It is available only in the Defence ministry and normally used for demolishing buildings. Who issued the explosives to be used and why? When Altantuya was killed, Najib was still the Defence Minister.

Who is Altantuya Shaariibuu?

· Shaariibuugiin Altantuyaa (1978 – 2006), is a Mongolian national, who was murdered brutally in Shah Alam Malaysia on the 19th October 2006, during the month of Ramadhan.

· She worked as a translator for Mr. Abdul Razak Baginda, who is a well-known political analyst, a close ally to Prime Minister Najib Razak.

· When Altantuya Shaariibuu was killed, Najib was the deputy prime minister and defense minister.

· She was also a single mother with two young children below 10 years old.

· Her younger son has a rare brain disease and she was trying to earn enough money to send him for a good medical treatment.

· Now both her sons are orphaned and they are taken care of by their grandfather – Mr Setev Shaariibuu and his spouse in a village in Mongolia.

· Altantuya was recruited for the job because she was reportedly fluent in Mongolian, Russian, Chinese, English, and some French. In fact prior to this job, she has had some business dealings with Abdul Razak.

· Razak Baginda was at that time, a defense analyst from the Malaysian Strategic Research Centre think-tank.

Who killed Altantuya?

· On 9 April 2009, the Shah Alam High Court meted out the death sentence to two accused – policemen Chief Inspector Azilah Shaari and Corporal Sirul Azhar.

· They had been members of the elite Unit Tindakan Khas (the Malaysian Police Special Action Force or counter-terrorism unit) and were both assigned to the office of the Deputy Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, who was also the Defence Minister at the time of the murder.

· The duo were bodyguards of Najib who was then DPM. The trial took 159 days. Both policemen never knew Altantuya and until today, the questions remain:

· What is their motive for killing her?

· Who ordered her killing?

· These questions were never answered. Another accused was Abdul Razak Baginda, but he escaped the gallows and was released without his defence being called.

· On 31 October 2008 the High Court acquitted Abdul Razak Baginda of abetment in the murder of Altantuya, with the prosecution saying they would appeal the acquittal. To date, the appeal has yet to transpire.

Where and how was she killed?

· Altantuya was murdered by large quantities of C-4 explosives, large enough to bring down a four-storey building. The remnants of her body was found in a jungle clearing in Puncak Shah Alam.

· C4 explosives is not the kind you can find in a 7-11 store or a grocery store. In other words, it is not easily accessible. In fact, it is learnt, that C4 explosives is only available if approval for its usage is given by the Ministry of Defence.

· According to court testimony by one of her murderers, Altantuya was first shot twice – one in her head and the other in her abdomen – before she was strapped to the explosives which eventually blew her into pieces.

· Altantuya was killed because she knew too much?

· That’s what her dad Mr Shaariibuu said when he came to Malaysia in 2007 to attend her murder trial

· According to reports by the French newspaper Liberation, Altantuya found out that one of the parties involved in negotiations, a Spanish company Armaris, had paid out the commissions of 114 million euros for the deal (reportedly one billion euros or RM4.7 billion for the purchase of three submarines).

· The commission was credited into the accounts of a company controlled by Razak, Perimekar.

· Subsequently, Altantuya, accompanied by her cousin, went to Kuala Lumpur to ask for the portion of the commission due to her (allegedly US$500,000).

· Unfortunately, Altantuya never got her share.

Altantuya knew Najib?

· Najib had sworn on the Quran that he does not know ‘the Mongolian woman’.

· BUT she was allegedly introduced to Razak Baginda at an international diamond convention in Hong Kong by Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister, Najib Tun Razak, and had a relationship with him.

· She accompanied Razak Baginda to Paris where she worked as translator during his negotiations to purchase submarines from France for the Malaysian government.

· She reportedly became his mistress in Paris in 2005, and a photo of the two with Najib Razak had been taken in a Paris nightclub.

· According to court testimony by Altantuya's cousin Burmaa Oyunchimeg, Altantuya had shown Burmaa a photograph of 3 persons taking a meal together: Altantuyaa, Razak Baginda, and a government official.

· When questioned by the lawyer of the victim's family, Karpal Singh, Burmaa identified the official as then Deputy Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak.

Further allegations that Altantuya knew Najib

· In Jul 2008, a private investigator P Balasubramaniam made shocking claims that Najib had links with the murder of Altantuya by informing Razak Baginda that “inspector-general of police Musa Hassan would 'take care' of the murder case which implicated Abdul Razak”.

· He further revealed that his evidence linking Najib to the murdered Mongolian was removed by the police and prosecutors during the murder trial - a move seen to protect the DPM.

· These shocking revelations were made by Balasubramaniam in a statutory declaration which he filed on July 1.

· Balasubramaniam was the PI hired by Abdul Razak to ‘handle’ Altantuya, who had apparently come over to Malaysia in 2006 to settle some financial issues with Abdul Razak.

· He retracted his SD the very next day, under duress, removing all allegations related to Najib. Then he went missing.

· Recently, Bala surfaced in London, and claimed he was paid RM750,000 to retract his first SD and to disappear until Najib becomes PM. He claimed he was paid by a carper dealer named Deepak, who is closely linked the Najib’s brother Nazir, and the former’s wife, Rosmah Mansor.

Parliamentary Disclosure on the Submarines

· The two submarines (KD Tuanku Abdul Rahman and KD Tun Razak) cost a whooping 7.3 billion ringgit in total and not RM 3.4 billion as originally announced. The figures escalated after factoring in maintenance and other costs, not earlier made known.

· Maintenance contracts have yet to be issued.

· The delay of the purchase of the missiles.

· The delay in the purchase of missiles and torpedoes expected to be delivered only in 2013.

· Overpricing of about 20% from the market rate amounting to an excess of 36 million Euros spent.

The French Connection

* A team of French lawyers is seeking answers to how a company with close ties to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak managed to acquire a €114 million (US$151.1 million) commission to buy two Scorpene subs and to lease a third for US$1 billion as a result of a contract signed in 2002.

* They have come to Malaysia recently (in April) to collect evidence on the case.

* In France, giving commissions to individuals or companies or politicians is against the law.

* The French company involved is DCNS. DCNS is controversial in that it has also been involved in other similar cases before – most noted – in Pakistan and Taiwan – where murder has also occurred.

* Perimekar, the Malaysian company, was believed to have been established in 2001, shortly before the submarine contract was signed, solely to receive the commission to be able to pay kickbacks both in Malaysia and France.

* The wife of Abdul Razak Baginda, the then-defense minister's (Najib) best friend, was listed as the director of the company, which was owned by Baginda.

* Recently, according to the French legal team, the money in Perimekar’s bank account seem to have migrated elsewhere. The question is where?

Why is SUARAM involved?

SUARAM is a human rights organization, and is known to speak out fearlessly in defense of human rights, good governance and an open and accountable society. For over 20 years SUARAM has worked to expose corrupt practices, poor governance and champion the rights of people before profits.

SUARAM has been monitoring the scandal building not just surrounding the mysterious and horrendous death of Altantuya Shariibu, but her role and involvement in the procurement of arms for the Malaysian government, leading to her gruesome murder.

On 23 December 2009, SUARAM through our networks in France linked up with leading human rights lawyers in France, to file a complaint with the French judicial system, with the hope that a preliminary investigation would be initiated. This was done to enable access to information, to the government contracts signed with PERIMEKAR and other information classified as government secrets in Malaysia.

In April 2010, the lawyers representing SUARAM, informed us that the courts had accepted the request to investigate the claim of corruption for a payment amounting to Euro 114 million made as commissions from DCNS to Perimekar. At this stage the investigations are still ongoing, and it may take a few more months, for the findings to be made known, and for the investigators to announce a decision as to whether there is sufficient evidence to pursue a full trial at the next level of the courts.


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通告 Notification

人民之友 对我国第14届大选意见书
(华 巫 英)3种语文已先后贴出

作为坚守“独立自主”和“与民同在”的立场的一个民间组织,人民之友在今年9月24日对即将来临的第14届全国大选投票,发表了一篇以华文书写的“意见书”,题为:投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!

这篇意见书的英文译稿(标题是:Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”!)已于10月22日张贴在本部落格。马来文译稿(标题是:Undilah "calon yang membantah pengislaman negara": Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Mencegah puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa!)也已接着在11月13日在此贴出。



Pandangan Sahabat Rakyat terhadap PRU14 telah diterbitkan dalam tiga bahasa (Melayu, Cina dan Inggeris)

Sebagai sebuah pertubuhan masyarakat yang berpendirian teguh tentang prinsip "bebas dan berautonomi" dan “sentiasa berdampingan dengan rakyat jelata”, Sahabat Rakyat telah menerbitkan kenyataan tentang pandangan kami terhadap Pilihan Raya Umum ke-14 yang bertajuk "Undilah calon yang menentang Pengislaman Negera: Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Jangan benarkan puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa! " (投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!)dalam Bahasa Cina pada 24hb September 2017.

Penterjemahan Bahasa Inggeris kenyataan tersebut yang bertajuk Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”! telah diterbitkan dalam blog kita pada 22hb Oktober 2017 manakala penterjemahan Bahasa Melayu telah diterbitkan pada 13hb November 2017.

Selain daripada itu, Sahabat Rakyat juga akan menyebarkan kenyataan ini seluas mungkin kepada pertubuhan dan individu semua bangsa, strata, profesyen dan agama seluruh Negara melalui email, wechat, whatsApp dan pelbagai saluran lain. Kami amat mengalu-alukan pertubuhan dan individu yang berpendirian dan pandangan sama dengan kami untuk turut menyebarkan kenyataan ini kepada lebih ramai orang!

Kami berharap pendirian dan pandangan kami berkenaan pilihan raya kali ini yang dinyatakan dalam kenyataan tersebut dapat disebarkan dengan tepat dan meluas untuk diuji dalam kalangan rakyat semua bangsa semua strata sosial melalui penglibatan mereka dalam amalan pelbagai parti politik dalam pertempuran pilihan raya umum kali ini mahupun amalan masa depan.

The Chinese, English and Malay renditions of Sahabat Rakyat’s opinions about GE14 have been published consecutively

As an NGO which upholds “independent and autonomous” position and "always be with the people" principle, on 24 September 2017, Sahabat Rakyat had released a Chinese-written statement of views with regard to the voting in the upcoming 14th General Election, entitled “Vote for candidates who are against State Islamisation: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent the return to power of Mahathir’s faction!” (投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!)

The English rendition of this statement entitled "Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”!" and the Malay rendition entitled "Undilah "calon yang membantah pengislaman negara": Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Mencegah puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa!" had been released on 22 October and 13 November respectively.

Apart from that, Sahabat Rakyat will also make every effort to disseminate this statement as widely as possible to organizations and individuals of all ethnic groups, religions and all walks of life throughout the country via email, WeChat, WhatsApp and other channels. We welcome organizations and individuals with the same position and views to spread this statement to more people!

We hope that our position and views pertaining to the upcoming General Election expressed in the statement will be accurately and widely disseminated and also examined by the popular masses of various ethnicity and social strata through their involvement in the struggle of the 14th General Election carried out by various political parties and their practices in all fields in future.

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