Altantuya murder: Will Sirul reveal anything new tomorrow?


Ian McIntyre, The Ant Daily

Many in Malaysia and abroad will be waiting in suspense over what former police commando Sirul Azhar Umar will reveal in a live teleconference call with the local media tomorrow.

More importantly, they are hoping that the convicted murderer will reveal something new.

But a few lawyers in Penang are neither impressed nor amused with Sirul’s intention, saying that whatever he claims may add more confusion rather than clarity to a case that has mystified Malaysia.

It has been over eight years that Mongolian beauty Altantuya Shaariibuu was murdered in the most horrific of circumstances.

The model was alleged to have been shot dead before her body was blown to bits by the use of the lethal C4 plastic explosives by Sirul and his superior Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri.

Both were sentenced to death by the Federal Court.

With the looming teleconference just hours away according to PAS Information Chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar, the lawyers are telling people not to hold their breath.

Legally speaking, Sirul is not doing himself any favours, they said as the court had already convicted them.

He may also be in contempt although his intended course of action may be justified as he is believed to be fighting to avoid the gallows.


His act is best interpreted as an “afterthought”, said Jason Ong Khan Lee, a lawyer from Penang PKR.

It would be difficult to convince the court or the Attorney-General on a need to review the case just through such an action, he reasoned.

Perhaps, a police report and a fresh investigation may be in order, but the mannerism behind Sirul’s claim of innocence at this juncture smells of conspiracy of the highest order.

Only when he is about to face a death sentence, which was meted by the highest court in the land, did Sirul then claim that he was actually the  “victim” in this heinous crime.

Ong also asked why Sirul did not make any effort to contact his alleged accomplice Azilah to underscore what he is alleging.

“Fleeing the country while claiming his innocence has opened up an air of doubt, and people are suspicious of why he is doing it now.

“Could he be part of a large conspiracy? Why reveal now when one is facing the gallows? Why didn’t he do so during the exhaustive trial proceedings,” Ong questioned.

The ex-commando had many chances in court to state his claim, and there were channels available through his counsel, yet he chose to speak only upon seeking refuge overseas.

Sirul is now under detention at an Australian immigration facility pending an outcome of his appeal to remain Down Under.

Over the past weeks, it is believed that PAS has persistently attempted to get Sirul to tell his side of the story about the murder. So far, he had only said that he was following orders.

If the teleconference takes place tomorrow, will Sirul reveal anything new? Will the missing vital element of why the murder took place finally be told?

It’s the motive of the murder that people are anxious to find out.