Theft of RMAF Jet Engines – Public Perception Eroded

The last few days, the new media is having a gala time reporting on the missing RMAF jet fighter engine, and instead of just one engine, now the number has increased to two. Just don’t believe in that number as yet. It may be many more, because the bottom of the ice-berg can be 100 times larger than the tip. Isn’t this the indication given by the Chief of Defence Force himself?

By Muhamad Arshad Raji (Mind NO EVIL)

Now, I not going to blame anyone nor ask anyone to be jailed for the fiasco. But the many people that I met does not seem to be too happy at the way the government handles the issue, that is viewed as an act of treason by those involved in the theft of the engines. The punishment meted to those involved as reported, does not reflect the severity of the case. We are not taking about a motor car engine, but a jet fighter engine, and surely the original equipment manufacturer will be deeply concern as to which country gets possession the engine.

It was indicated in the main stream media of the likelihood that the engines had been shipped to a middle eastern country. My guess is a country under sanction by the US, and it was only upon the US having sensed that the engines could possibly be in the hands of a country under sanction, that our government decided to expose the theft. Hence, the two year long silence.

Another view as to why the government decided to keep the news under wraps at the time was because the country was nearing the 2008 General Elections, and exposing such an issues that impinge upon national security, would be disastrous for the ruling government. And to bring out the issue soon after the elections was not the right time either, because this will jeopardize the momentum that has been building up by pro Najib supporters, to ensure that Najib becomes the next Prime Minister, following BN’s disastrous 2008 General Elections.

On hindsight, I believe that the government was wrong in keeping silence from public knowledge, this security related issue that has serious national and international repercussions. The government will now have to bear the brunt of public odium, and also possibly the loss of pubic confidence in the government’s future handling of serious security related issues. Whatever reasons and justifications that the government has given now has little impact on building and reassuring public confidence, and this does not augur well for Najib’s leadership.