It was Mokhzani and Daim, not Najib, who mooted the submarine deal

So, it was Mokhzani Mahathir and Tun Daim Zainuddin who in 1995 were behind the submarine contract and the final decision was made in 2001 and the contract signed in 2002. Najib took over as Prime Minister in 2009 long after everything was over. But then they point their fingers at Najib who was not in charge until seven years later. And this is what the French police investigation revealed.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Changing horses in midstream literally means someone who is trying to move from one horse to another while crossing a stream and refers to someone who makes major changes after something has already begun. And that is what Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is currently doing. In fact, Mahathir has changed horses in midstream many times over the last four years since 2013 when he discovered that all his horses turned out to be donkeys in the end.

And Mahathir is, yet again, changing horses in midstream when he suddenly woke up to the realisation that his strategy of using the 1MDB issue to bring down Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak is not succeeding. It is now 33 months since he fired the first shot against 1MDB by asking Khairuddin Abu Hassan to lodge a police report in December 2014, which was supposed to be the beginning of the end for Najib. And the end was supposed to be about seven months later in July 2015.

Yes, 33 months ago a seven-month program was launched. And in July 2015 Muhyiddin Yassin was supposed to have taken over as the seventh Prime Minister of Malaysia while Mukhriz Mahathir would resign as the Kedah Menteri Besar and would become the new Deputy Prime Minister. Then a by-election would be held so that Mukhriz could become a Member of Parliament, a prerequisite for him becoming the eighth Prime Minister.

Mahfuz Omar would resign his Pokok Sena parliamentary seat in Kedah to make way for Mukhriz Mahathir in a by-election that would have to be called

However, the July 2015 coup failed and they tried again in October and again in December, both which also failed. The second coup attempt in October 2015 was supposed to be a vote of no confidence in Parliament and the December 2015 coup was supposed to be a vote of no confidence in the Umno assembly.

On 3rd February 2016, Mukhriz was removed as the Kedah Menteri Besar and, on 29th February, Mahathir merajuk (sulked) and resigned from Umno. Mahathir had played right into Najib’s hands because that is what Najib wanted. Sacking Mahathir would help the old man gain sympathy but if Mahathir resigns, yet again, on his own accord, then he would not be able to gain any political mileage.

In Malay culture they call this talak tiga and if you want to come back you need to look for a Cina buta (blind Chinaman). And that blind Chinaman that Mahathir went to see is Lim Kit Siang — which, again, is precisely what Najib wanted to see happen. The worst thing that both Mahathir and Kit Siang could do was to go to bed together after what they had both said about each other these last 50 years or so. Malays call this jilat balik kahak (licking back your phlegm). And this is precisely what Mahathir and Kit Siang did: they licked back their phlegm which they had been spitting out for 50 years.

It was then that Mahathir realised the 1MDB issue was not going anywhere. Even with Sarawak Report and the US media hitting non-stop and the RM50 million budget to buy off the media and bloggers Najib would still not fall. He needed the US government to help bring Najib down and that was when Mahathir sent Matthias Chang and team to the US to meet his contacts there. Mahathir agreed to donate US5 million to the Clinton election campaign if the US Department of Justice (DoJ) can hold a press conference and announce that the US government is now investigating the allegations against 1MDB.

Muhyiddin admits he was the one who brought the 1MDB matter to Mahathir to use as the weapon to oust Najib — which was why Mahathir, who did not understand the issue, made the mistake of announcing that RM42 billion of 1MDB’s money had disappeared into thin air

Mahathir was hoping that the DoJ involvement could help bring Najib down after almost 20 months of trying unsuccessfully. But now Mahathir knows that even with the DoJ involvement that is not going to happen. And, to make matters worse, there are certain changes happening in the US that are going to impact the Clinton election campaign and the investigation might prove that Mahathir donated US$5 million to the Clinton election campaign just before the DoJ called for that press conference on 1MDB in July 2016.

The questions that the investigation is now asking is whether Mahathir bribed the Clinton election campaign to get the DoJ to hold a press conference on 1MDB in July 2016. And if it is a legitimate donation and had nothing to do with getting the DoJ to hold a press conference on 1MDB then why the need to camouflage that donation through a third party? If the donation is above board you do not need to hide it, just like Najib did not hide the RM2.6 billion donation he received from the Arabs.

The way the US$5 million donation was made and the links to the DoJ appears like Mahathir ‘bought’ the July 2016 DoJ press conference. And that is going to come out soon once the investigation against the Clinton election campaign proceeds.

So the DoJ action against 1MDB is going to work against Mahathir once the secret of the US$5 million donation becomes public knowledge. And Mahathir will also need to explain why he tried to hide that donation if it is not a bribe? Mahathir now wishes he never brought the DoJ and Clinton election campaign into this matter because it is making it look even worse for him.

Mahathir donated US$5 million to the Clinton election campaign just before the July 2016 DoJ press conference on 1MDB

If the next general election is held one year from now (and that appears to be the case) then the 1MDB issue is worthless. In fact, it is already worthless now because it was supposed to be the leverage to bring Najib down in July 2015 and it is already August 2017 — and by August 2018 when the general election is going to be held it is going to be basi like hell.

And that is why Mahathir is changing horses in midstream. Mahathir is abandoning the 1MDB horse and wants to now ride the Scorpene submarine horse. And that is why they came out with that fake news that Abdul Razak Baginda had been arrested and charged in France, which is not true.

It is true that the French authorities are investigating a complaint that Suaram lodged with the French court regarding corruption in the Scorpene contract. However, the investigation is confined to the allegation of corruption committed by French nationals and/or a French company. And Razak is not a French national. He is a Malaysian citizen.

Cynthia Gabriel used Suaram to lodge a complaint with the French court

Then comes the question of jurisdiction. The French testified that all business was conducted in Malaysia and not in France. That means even if a crime had been committed then it would have been committed in Malaysia and not on France soil. So, while that does not exempt French citizens or French companies from prosecution, they cannot touch foreign nationals who committed a crime in their homeland and not on French soil.

The French investigation revealed that Najib never stepped foot on French soil during that period in question while no one from France had ever met Altantuya Shaariibuu from 1995 till the day she was supposed to have died. Furthermore, all those French officials involved in the contract negotiations spoke perfect English, as did those on the Malaysian side, so they did not need any translator, especially a translator like Altantuya who did not speak French and spoke poor English.

Suaram actually made a huge blunder in 2010 when they lodged their complaint with the French court. Before 2010 there were many questions with no answers. However, since the French police started investigating this matter, many questions have now been answered. Suaram should have left this matter alone and allowed the questions to remain questions with no answers. Then it would have looked very bad for Najib.

The French police rejected PI Bala’s testimony as unreliable, inconsistent and purely hearsay

The French also recorded the late private investigator Balasubramaniam Perumal’s statement in Paris. However, they decided to not include Bala’s statement in the final report because, according to the French police, his statement only focused on Altantuya while the investigation is about corruption surrounding the submarine contract and has nothing to do with Altantuya. And Bala said he does not know anything about the submarine contract.

Furthermore, Bala’s statement was all hearsay, meaning he just repeated what, according to him, Altantuya told him, and he is not a witness to anything that happened or was spoken. And he was also not consistent in his story and kept changing it every time. Hence the French police decided to reject Bala’s statement as unreliable, mere hearsay, and irrelevant to the focus of the investigation. So, in the end Bala wasted his trip to Paris other than the part where he visited Disneyland to complete the fantasy world he was living in.

What was even more damaging was the testimony by the French that no one had ever met Altantuya or know who she is and that all the negotiations were done in Malaysia and not in France and that everyone involved spoke perfect English. And the French police, immigration, plus Interpol, confirmed that Najib had never entered France so Tian Chua’s spin that Najib had dinner with Altantuya on the Eiffel Tower was proven false.

Big mistake! Suaram should have left this matter alone instead of getting the French police to confirm that everything the opposition said about the submarine contract and Altantuya’s involvement are lies. What is even more damaging to the opposition is the revelation that the submarine contract negotiations started in 1995 when Mahathir was the Prime Minister and Anwar Ibrahim his Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister. In fact, Najib was the Education Minister at that time and was not involved in defence matters.

The submarine project was first mooted by Mokhzani Mahathir and Daim Zainuddin back in 1995 while Najib was the Education Minister and not at all involved in defence matters

This was what SeaDemon had to say about the matter today:

The original proponents of the Malaysian submarine program were Mokhzani Mahathir and Ibrahim Mohd Noor (who was then then CEO of newly-listed BERNAS, acting on behalf of Daim Zainuddin). They proposed the German Type 212 (an Air-Independent Propulsion version of the Type 209 design) through a company called…wait for it…Perimekar Sdn Bhd, then operating drom a bungalow in Jalan Lembah Ledang off Jalan Semantan in Kuala Lumpur.

However, in 1999 the then-Chief of the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN), Admiral Tan Sri Abu Bakar Jamal convinced the then Prime Minister (guess who) at the Avillion Layang-Layang Resort for a submarine program purchasing a very capable submarine.

The Prime Minister bought the idea when Admiral Abu Bakar said, to the effect of, “Imagine we (the RMN) could operate in stealth as far as the Sea of Japan and the North Indian Ocean, without anyone finding out.” The green light was given then.

Sometime in September 2001, the ownership of Perimekar Sdn Bhd was transferred to the Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera (LTAT) through Boustead Bhd’s special purpose vehicle called Ombak Laut Sdn Bhd. The Board of Directors of Perimekar Sdn Bhd then were Rear Admiral (Rtd) Hussin Tamby and Mazlina Makhzan, Abdul Razak Baginda’s wife.

The company, together with officials from the RMN sifted through more than 17,000 pages of technical documents of the Scorpene. After this point, as mentioned in my previous posting, the Secretary-General of Treasury took over the final commercial negotiations. MINDEF, Perimekar et al no longer had any role to play.

The deal to purchase two Scorpene-type submarines from DCNS and Thales was inked in June 2002, when the then-Prime Minister was also the Finance Ministry who would have given the final approval for the procurement. It was signed by all the relevant parties at the Ballroom of the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur. (READ MORE HERE)

Daim Zainuddin mooted the idea of buying submarines and he brought Mokhzani into the deal to get Mahathir to agree to it

So, it was Mokhzani Mahathir and Tun Daim Zainuddin who in 1995 were behind the submarine contract and the final decision was made in 2001 and the contract signed in 2002. Najib took over as Prime Minister in 2009 long after everything was over. But then they point their fingers at Najib who was not in charge until seven years later. And this is what the French police investigation revealed.

So is Mahathir making the right decision by changing horses in midstream when this new Scorpene submarine horse is even more of a donkey than his old 1MDB horse? I suppose a drowning man will clutch at straws and Mahathir is certainly clutching straws by resurrecting the Scorpene submarine matter that his son, Mokhzani, and Daim are guilty of.