Now that the ghost of Altantuya Shaariibuu has once again appeared to haunt Najib Razak as Umno delegates meet at the party’s 66th general assembly, the prime minister is urged to explain his family’s involvement in the scandal.
PAS vice-president Husam Musa said the statements made by carpet trader Deepak Jaikishan to three alternative media this week both “directly and indirectly” linked the prime minister’s family to the murdered Mongolian national.
“Najib should provide a full explanation. It is not just him but Umno too which would be adversely affected seeing that the general election is very near,” he said in a statement yesterday.
“Najib can no longer remain silent (on the matter), ” he added.
Referring in particular to Deepak’s interview in PAS-owned Harakahdailyon Tuesday, in which he spoke about his involvement in private investigator P Balasubramaniam’s second statutory declaration (SD) which reversed an earlier one linking Najib to Altantuya, Husam described it as “explosive”.
Among the businessperson’s statements quoted by Husam are, “Actually, after all this happened, they tried to silence me. How he (Najib) acted was not that of a friend who would helped another friend, but rather the ‘present’ he sent was in the form of 50 enforcement officers who came to visit me once the Bala case was exposed. We all know at that time, Najib was the prime minister. The 50 enforcement officers were sent and carted away … five, six lorries…”
Deepak’s statements, Husam said, clearly alluded to the PM as well as his family, to whom the carpet trader is known to have close ties with.
The senior PAS politician questioned how Najib, who is also Umno president, can lead the party and BN in facing a crucial general election while embroiled in personal issues.
Instead, Husam (left) suggested Umno “remove” Najib to increase its chances of survival as a new PM will bring refreshed hope for the party.
Husam also hinted the possibility of an internal campaign within Umno against Najib.
“I am convinced Deepak would not dare make these statements if he did not receive an assurance from somebody. This mean there is an insider (in Umno) who is directing Deepak’s actions.”
Najib-Altantuya link revived by Deepak
Balasubramaniam had on July 3, 2008, made an explosive SD alleging Najib was linked to Altantuya and that his evidence on that link was removed by the police and prosecutors during the murder trial.
However, Balasubramaniam (right) abruptly withdrew the first SD at another press conference the following day, and accompanied by lawyer M Arulampalam, produced a second one, claiming that he had made the first one under duress.
The private eye then fled the country the very next day.
In another U-turn, Balasubramaniam re-emerged on Nov 12, 2009 in the form of a five-part video interview on YouTube – believed to be shot in India – in which he retracted his second SD and claimed that he had only made it after being offered RM5 million by Deepak.
The issue was again revived this week by Deepak, who toldMalaysiakini that he regretted his involvement in getting Balasubramaniam to sign the second SD.