Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Four Razak Brothers Get Agitated

The New York Times article entitled “Towers of Secrecy: Jho Low, Well Connected in Malaysia, Has an Appetite for New York,” published on February 08, 2015 had wanted to investigate the connection between flamboyant businessperson Jho Low and Riza Aziz, stepson of current Prime Minister Najib Razak, and suggested that both Low and Riza were moneyed men.
It is this particular excerpt from the said article that intrigues fans of Najib and Rosmah: “While Mr Aziz has previously said he is personally wealthy, he declined to explain how he acquired his money. Mr Najib’s office, in a statement, said, ‘The Prime Minister does not track how much Mr Aziz earns or how such earnings are reinvested.’ As for the Prime Minister himself, the statement said he had ‘received inheritance’.”

The article even informed readers of the Najib family's lifestyle, in particular Rosmah's love of the good life. It quoted a former aide as saying that he saw "piles and piles of ringgit" in a safe kept by Najib!
The way the Prime Minister's Office put it, one could happily infer that the late Abdul Razak (Najib’s dad and Malaysia’s second prime minister) was the source of this “inheritance”.


Predictably, Malaysians begin to wonder and conjecture. And when we consider the luxury collection of Birkin bags and other branded artefacts belonging to Rosmah Mansor (Najib’s spouse, if you still don’t know) – all the more, we ask ourselves where did Rosmah – or rather Najib since she did say on Monday that she is merely a housewife with no income – get the money to pay for her indulgences in the first place?
The “inheritance” word persisted in staying put in our consciousness. And as the Malay Mail Online reported, four of Razak’s five sons were compelled to step forward to express their grave concern over news reports that speculated over the origins and size of their father’s supposed wealth. I read that they were  really upset and they got very agitated.

It seems one source had indicated that the four brothers had no choice but to make it clear that there was no large inheritance as suggested by the PMO statement. The latter was being mischievous and deliberately deceptive. If it was from the PMO, then it stands to reason that it must have originated from Najib himself.
And so Johari Razak, Nizam Razak, Nazim Razak and Nazir Razak issued a joint statement yesterday – which read in part: “We wish to put on record that Tun Abdul Razak was a highly principled man, well known to all who knew him for his frugality and utmost integrity and any statement or inference to the contrary would be totally false and misleading to his memory and to his service and sacrifices for the nation”.
And it incorporated this intriguing line: “We would also like to add that our whole family is united on this issue.”
Still, it is strange that Najib Razak was NOT named as one of the persons issuing the statement. Hmmm…
Two questions come immediately to mind. First, by referring to "inheritance", had not Najib sullied Razak's legacy? Oh my Rosmah, his own father!! Second, if we accept the brothers' rejoinder on this "inheritance" issue – how did Najib get his grubby hands on a fortune which enabled him to keep globe-trotting Rosmah very happy?
Yesterday, I was at Taylor’s College in SS15, Subang Jaya for their Toastmasters meeting. I am not exaggerating when I say that I was amazed and also impressed with their members – particularly in the quality of their speeches and even evaluations. And equally important, the excitable enthusiasm and energetic exuberance they exhibited made me feel really glad that I accepted their invitation to be there as the General Evaluator.
The only hitch was they started twenty-one minutes late and that in my books, is a major felony! My score for this meeting is a 3.5 over 10.


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