Monday, February 2, 2009

Conspiracies ~ Malaysiakini

MACC and UMNO Disciplinary Board Conspiracies?

The arrest and questioning of UMNO Supreme Council member Datuk Norza Zakaria by the newly set-up Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC)has sent shockwaves throughout the entire party, as it prepares for the most important and closely fought party elections in decades.

Norza and over ten other delegates from Pahang were picked up by MACC officers armed with recorded conversations and printed receipts from meals paid in for during various meetings between Norza – and his agents – with delegates, in Kuala Terengganu during the recent by-election, to Temerloh where cold hard cash was allegedly exchanged.

I will leave the debate about whether simply paying for meals should be considered ‘money politics’ – it is worth remembering that corporate individuals often treat clients to lunches and dinners – for another day. But the burning question now is why Norza and who is behind the whole headhunt; it is an open secret that practically everyone involved in the contests spend a fair sum of money for campaigning purposes, and certain individuals spend far more than average, with the purpose of buying votes and causing the effect of ’spoiling the market’. Norza is not one of those individuals.

Even before the blame game started, there would have been no surprises as to who would be blamed – Khairy Jamaluddin and the Prime Minister Pak Lah. On the ground, a preposterous story about how Pak Lah and KJ purposely set Norza and the delegates from Pahang to be caught in the state of incoming Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Najib has already been spread by agents of parties unfriendly to Pak Lah and KJ. The story goes, Pak Lah is trying to position himself to stay on past March and this is just the beginning of an elaborate strategy to undermine Najib.

What these individuals conveniently left out of the story is that Norza is a close associate of Pak Lah, and especially KJ. Much of the anti-KJ sentiment began when he was accused of having assisted Norza in clinching government projects worth millions. KJ has never admitted to actively helping Norza to secure such deals, but the general public knows of their close association that goes back to the days before KJ won the Deputy UMNO Youth Head post uncontested. So whilst the anti-KJ bunch so readily tried to paint KJ and Norza as being the closest of cronies, they are now blaming KJ for framing Norza. Clearly their story does not stand the test of logic and transitivity.

If one were to closely study the facts of the matter, a general picture emerges that places rivals of both Pak Lah and KJ -– with Tun Dr. Mahathir, Datuk Mukhriz and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as heads – as the masterminds behind this campaign to disqualify KJ/PL associates. It especially significant that Norza was ‘chosen’, since he has no government position nor a member of the legislature – there is little widespread political fallout beyond the effect on KJ and PL.

Shockingly, this extreme interference is rampant even within the UMNO Disciplinary Board, that although headed by Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen – a man with impeccable integrity – is now being hijacked by former Kuala Pilah Division Head and Muhyiddin associate, Tan Sri Abu Zahar Andika Ujang who handles all money politics cases, at times even before files reach Rithaudeen’s table.

What evidence do I have to say that Abu Zahar is part of this Mahathir-Mukhriz-Muhyiddin team? First of all, is also the Chairman of Mubarak, the body of former elected representatives that in September openly called for Pak Lah to speed up the transition process (this was before it eventually happened). Secondly, he is the Chairman of Lembaga Pertubuhan Peladang, a post handed to him by Muhyiddin when the latter was Minister of Agriculture. Rewind just a few days ago, Abu Zahar was the man who appeared in newspapers suggesting that there be ‘compromise’ in the contest of Deputy President – essentially putting pressure on Datuk Seri Ali Rustam and Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib to withdraw so that Muhyiddin can be Deputy President and Deputy Prime Minister uncontested. How can a man like this to be expected to be impartial?

The wolves are lining up outside the door or Pak Lah and KJ. Even disqualifications of candidates due to money politics are being blamed on them. In truth, all the evidence in the world show that the real culprits only want three things: 1) Pak Lah to be humiliated. 2) Muhyiddin to win as Deputy President. 3) Mukhriz to win as Youth Head. And they will use all tools at their disposal to ensure the three targets are achieved, including concocting cases and framing candidates to ensure that Mukhriz and Muhyiddin win their respective contests ‘free’. Najib, on this matter, is quite powerless since these are the individuals who ‘installed’ him as Prime Minister-in waiting to begin with. You’ve got to ask, who’s the one selling the party now? KJ?

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