A day before Teoh’s inquest, police say it is still sudden death

By Wong Choon Mei, Suara Keadilan

A day before heading into what is set to be Malaysia’s most-watched inquest in a long while, police are refusing to classify the suspicious death of Selangor political officer Teoh Beng Hock as anything other “sudden death”.

According to state police chief Khalid Abu Bakar, investigations were “more or less” finished. They are now waiting for the post-mortem and pathologist reports, due to arrive this evening, before officially closing their file.

So far, 77 witnesses have been questioned but only 28 of these were MACC officers, he added.

The 30-year old Beng Hock fell to his death after a marathon interrogation session by the MACC. His body was found on the 5th floor podium of the adjoining building.

By now it has become clear Beng Hock could not have committed suicide as the authorities tried to insinuate at the onset of the case.

The police – who were quick to deny foul play – have been forced to retract their words following a public uproar amid a barrage of questions as to how he could have fallen from the 14th floor office of the MACC headquarters in Shah Alam, where access and exit require electronic pass-cards.

Although the pressure has forced Khalid and his men to conduct a more in-depth probe, friends and members of Beng Hock’s family have complained that during questioning, they also tried to fish out information that could be twisted to show that Beng Hock was under personal stress and could have jumped.

No wonder then that police ended up questioning far more friends and relatives rather than MACC officials.

Unbridled Umno corruption: A PM that let his people down

Prime Minister Najib Razak too has disappointed the country deeply by refusing to allow a Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate Beng Hock’s death.

Instead, Najib chose an inquest by a coroner’s court – over which his administration would be able to hold more sway than a full-scale and independent Royal Commission of Inquiry.

It has become evident that Najib’s primary intention is to protect the MACC. Why?

The agency has run into trouble with the public of late with several high-profile probes that were clearly politically instigated by certain top Umno leaders against the Pakatan Rakyat and even rivals from within their own party.

Nevertheless, according to Khalid  – who incurred national infamy earlier this year when he announced that car theft suspect Kugan Ananthan had died from lung infection when an autopsy showed he was beaten to death during police remand – Malaysians can still expect “a process of justice”.

Beng Hock’s inquest begins tomorrow till August 12.

As we prayed for his soul when his family buried him, we now pray for justice so that no other Malaysian life can ever be taken again so easily, so cheaply – by unbridled Umno corruption.

Let the show begin.