Sunday, July 8, 2018

Najib Razak Counterattacks

Social media is all abuzz with talk about Najib Razak (right) and his dishonourable disposition. 

His precarious predicament is not helped by the fact that the people spearheading the investigations into his so-called wrongdoings are all eager beavers who bring to their jobs, an earnest enthusiasm that Malaysians have not witnessed in a long, long time. 

Therefore, he knows he has to neutralize them – and it would seem that he is employing a strategy from the 36 Stratagems to achieve his aim. Of course, this is just my hypothesis.

The Thirty-Six Stratagems, in case you didn’t know, is an ancient Chinese collection of warfare wisdom – and which is well-suited even for politics. It is traditionally composed of six sections, each containing six related strategies.

The one I am referring to is Strategy 15 which is “Entice the Tiger to Leave the Mountain” under Section 3 labelled as Stratagems for Attack: “調虎離山/调虎离山, Diào hǔ lí shān”. 

“The tiger is powerful only when it is in its natural environment – the mountain. Examine your adversary’s source of power, and if the source is an individual, remove that individual. If an individual’s source of power comes from his adviser, then remove the adviser”. 

Another way of putting it is ‘Never directly attack an opponent whose advantage is derived from its position. Instead lure him away from his position, thus separating him from his source of strength’. 

Najib is in an unenviable situation – already on Wednesday, he was charged for four offences related to SRC International, a former unit of 1MDB – and he knows this is only the beginning. 

Therefore, in a legal counterattack, Najib filed lawsuits against the indefatigable investigators who are probing 1MDB. He picked the three important individuals, i.e. MACC chief Mohd Shukri Abdull, police commercial crimes head Amar Singh and Attorney-General Tommy Thomas. 

He has to try evicting the tigers from their mountain lair because they are fast closing in. 

Badrul Abdullah, who leads one of two Malaysian legal firms representing Najib, said the applications were based on past statements made by the trio, meaning, they were prejudiced against the former prime minister over the course of their investigations. 

“We are seeking a court decision on whether there is an element of conflict of interest among the individuals handling the case”, Badrul told Reuters

Of course, this move wouldn’t surprise Malaysians. 

In May, Shukri said a 2015 investigation into 1MDB was suppressed; Amar led police seizures of RM1.1 billion worth of valuables discovered in Najib-linked premises; and Thomas is the lead prosecutor who charged Najib with three counts of criminal breach of trust and one for abuse of power, related to RM42 million allegedly transferred into his account from SRC International. 

Court records had shown that the three civil filings were made on June 30, 2018 and named Najib as the applicant – but made public on Friday. 

Besides, Najib needs to do something, anything to delay the inevitable. And he keeps repeating the grovelling refrain that he is a victim of “political vengeance”. 

Petty. Pitiful. Pathetic.

On Tuesday, I was down in Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan where I was one of four speech coaches for a Public Speaking educational workshop  officially called Speech Communication & Influence module – for Yayasan Khazanah scholars.

I was assigned to a group of eight whose members had called themselves Marshmallows – and at the Speech Showcase, they swept three of the six awards that night. Wow!

In fact, every one of them is a winner! Congratulations, people, you rock!

(L-R) Aini Syahirah, Actuarial Science, Melbourne University; Alvin Lim, Actuarial Science, Universiti Malaya; Muhammad Imaan Hon, MBBS, International Medical University; Soeffiah Mierza Djuli, MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Southampton; Victor Ong; Aiman Fikri, Chemistry, University College London; Husain Ali Yahya, Major in English for International Communication with Minor in Japanese Communication, International Islamic University Malaysia; Muhammad Khalif Johari, MEng Mechanical Engineering, The University of Edinburgh; Aisswarya Vasu, MBBS, Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia.

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