Amokh a Minister?


Tan Sri Azman "Amokh" Mokhtar

So many speculations rambles for too long now about Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak’s Cabinet reshuffle. Too many names speculated in and out, in various permutations. PM Najib’s himself went through a barrage of press questions about this and he skilfully stone-walled himself out of all of them.

One notion we would like to put as a food for thought. Khazanah Holdings Bhd. President and CEO Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar a Cabinet Minister, soon?

The public expects Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yackop to leave the Federal Government. A replacement is necessary. Bringing a corporate man and parachuted direct into the highest level policy and decision making forum already has a precedence. PM Najib brought in former MAS CEO Dato’ Seri Idris Jala as the PEMANDU CEO with ministerial rank right from the GLC cushy job. Before that, former Maybank Managing Director Tan Sri Amrisham A. Aziz was brought in as Minister-in-charge-of-EPU, right after PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Dato’ Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s second general elections. So, why not the top most agent of PM Najib’s New Economic Model (NEM) gets the same appointment and perks?

‘People in the market’ are hedging bets that Azman be given the 2nd Minister of Finance or Minister-in-charge-of-EPU. He is a chartered accountant with corporate and merchant banking experience when he started his consulting firm Binafikir Consulting Sdn. Bhd. Whether or not Azman or Amokh (fondly known by his MCKK-mates) would do well as a Minister is anyone’s best-guests. However, many would expect him to continue the culture of employing consultants which include foreign based to advise and even do macro-economic planning for the Government, a legacy started during PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah and his infamous ‘Level Four Boys’ notoriety.


Khazanah's holdings in GLCs

As a comparison, both corporate leaders who did well in their MNC top-jobs and were ‘parachuted’ into their Cabinet posts did miserably as public servants. Running a corporation is very different from running a Government. Amirsham’s stewardship in EPU saw RON 95 shot up by 78sen overnight in mid 2008. That was then seen as the final ‘nail-to-the-coffin’ which saw the exit of PM ‘Flip-Flop’ Abdullah within the same year, who actually served the shortest tenure in Malaysian democratic history. It is believed that Nor Mohamed brought Amirsham into the Cabinet, as an ‘escapade’ from the Bank Internasional Indonesia acquisition blunder.

PEMANDU laboratories worked and ‘consulted’, including the industry. Coyly, in May Idris ‘frigthened’  Malaysians when he announced the Federal Government “Will go bankrupt in 9 years time” with the current trend of public spending, subsidies and increasing debts. His consultants-induced New Key Economic Area 12 cores lack seriousness when they completely missed out strategic sectors property and construction, automotive and SMEs and SMIs in their New Economic Model planning.

Khazanah Holdings structure

A renown economist who served as a consultant to Khazanah Holdings Bhd. told us recently that PM Najib’s NEM is about harnessing the best of what Malaysia could offer and utilising to the fullest all economic variables to generate the economy on a steady 7% per annum, as a two prong approach to propel Malaysia at par with the region’s growth and achieving the ‘Vision 2020’ set in 1991 to place our economy as a ‘Newly Developed’ by 2020. However, many are very skeptical in the approach to bring consultants such as McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group, Booze Allen Hamilton and the likes to do the macro-economic planning, for either the Federal Government, Khazanah and/or other GLCs. They are neither cheap nor effective.

Let’s see how rumours which are highlighted here in the digital dimension of bloggosphere, turn out. Yesterday, we already got a Cabinet Minister denying a ‘rape allegation’.

*Updated 1030pm

Published in: on January 6, 2011 at 15:07  Comments (36)  

The game’s afoot….

The much awaited and nerve-wrecking verdict on the Coroner’s Inquest for the sudden death of Teoh Beng Hock on 6 July 2009. Magistrate Azmil Muntapha delivered a 20 page inconclusive verdict at Shah Alam Courts Complex this afternoon.

The Star reported:

Published: Wednesday January 5, 2011 MYT 3:31:00 PM
Updated: Wednesday January 5, 2011 MYT 8:18:30 PM

Teoh Inquest: It’s not suicide, it’s not homicide, Coroner says


“The MACC president promised us an answer. How can you give an open verdict? Is this your answer? I can’t accept this,” Teoh’s sister Lee Lan cried.

KUALA LUMPUR: The death of political aide Teoh Beng Hock was not a suicide and it was not a homicide, Coroner Azmil Muntapha Abas ruled on Wednesday.

It is, therefore, an open verdict.

“The neck injury and the suicide note are the crucial evidence.

Teoh Lee Lan (right) crying after learning of the decision of the court. With her are her mother Teng Shuw Hor and father Teoh Leong Hwee.

“Two theories of cause of death were advanced – death by homicide and death by suicide,” he said.

“The handwriting of the suicide note was only similar to the deceased’s. I’m not qiualified to say it’s a suicide note.

“I rule out death of the deceased by suicide as there are unsettled issues in the question of suicide,” he said.

He also ruled out homicide, saying that the inquest had established that Teoh had sustained pre-fall injuries but there was no evidence, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the injuries constributed to death.

To assume third party involvement and direct connection with the pre-fall injury was as good as guesswork with no evidential value, said Azmil Muntapha

He gave out the much-awaited verdict on Wednesday as a huge crowd gathered inside and outside the second floor of the annex building of the court complex.

Teoh’s family were in tears and refused to comment until they spoke to their counsel.

Teoh’s sister Lee Lan cried outside the court room and screamed: “the MACC president promised us an answer.”

“How can you give an open verdict? Is this your answer? I can’t accept this,” she said in Mandarin and Malay.

The situation was chaotic as pressmen jostled to take photos and get comments.

A large group of supporters held up banners outside court complex demanding a Commission of Inquiry.

Teoh, 30, political secretary to Selangor executive councillor Ean Yong Hian Wah, was found dead on July 16 2009 on the fifth floor corridor of Plaza Masalam in Shah Alam after he had given a statement at the office of the Selangor branch of the commission on the 14th floor of the same building.

The Attorney-general’s office directed the inquest to be held since Teoh’s death raised questions of whether it was suicide or homicide.

It was widely reported that he had died hours after being questioned by the commission on alleged misuse of Selangor government allocations.

The inquest, scheduled to be completed within a month, dragged on until Nov 4 last year.

Thirty-seven witnesses testified, including well-known Thai pathologist Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand.

Dr Pornthip, who was invited by the Selangor government, raised controversy when she claimed that Teoh could have been murdered, leading to his body being exhumed for a second post-mortem.

However, when the court was expected to hear her expert view after the second autopsy, Pornthip caused further uproar when she alleged that she had been warned been threatened and warned not to attend the inquest.

Appearing in court again on Aug 18, she said the second post-mortem indicated that Teoh was not assaulted or tortured, but maintained that his death was not a suicide.

British forensics expert Professor Dr Peter Vanezis, engaged by the anti-corruption commission, testified that Teoh was not unconscious when he plunged to his death.

Dr Vanezis said the distribution of injuries indicated that Teoh was fully conscious and orientated at the time.

He also had testified that the second post-mortem, which was supervised by him, revealed that none of the injuries showed that he was killed by other means or thrown out of the window.


The DAP lawyers who are acting on behalf of the Teoh family announced that they will appeal this verdict at the Shah Alam High Court. That would be the ‘official’ stance.

The truth is far different. They had intended to capitalise what ever the outcome of this Coroner’s Inquest for the narrow sordid politics and of course pound on their ever consistent of ‘politics of hatred’ and ‘demonising the authorities’. The fact that they already all set to do come-what-may, with prepared banner to demand for a Royal Commission of Inquiry shows it all.

Come-what-may, the DAP already prepared this banner. Means they were ready the politicize the verdict regardless the outcome

The prepared banner proves the point that DAP was all ready to politicize the outcome of the inquest. Demanding for a Royal Commission of Inquiry is the SOP for them to legalise the demonising all law enforcement agencies, which happens to be headed and managed by Malay office bearers and officers.

It is very clear that the circus-stunt about Teoh’s death is all about DAP’s strategic ‘demonising the authorities’ agenda, translated via its anti-Malay attitude all along since its inception 45 years ago upon the expulsion of Singapore from the Federation of Malaysia.

Its time to allow the Police have a free range and hands for the comprehensive investigations. No one should be in their way. What ever the needed to see and view for the investigation, let the men and women in blues have it. Allow interviews. All those interviewed should give statements, unconditionally. This is about finding the truth of Teoh’s suddent death and who is exactly responsible. The case should be totally and holistically out of politics. Just as the investigations on the case of Sosilawati Lawiya, his driver, personal lawyer and banker gone missing and presumed dead  in late August 2010.

CID Director Dato’ Seri Mohd. Bakri Zinin and his officers and criminal experts should be allowed the free range to complete their investigations. No two ways about that.

For the rest of us, lets recap what we factually have so far. Our concern is why DAP Selangor Exco Ronnie Liu went frantic looking for Teoh Beng Hock’s handphone and behave like a thug when the deceased’s remains was taken to Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital in Klang. There is definitely something there.

Will Pakatan Rakyat especially DAP ever allow the case to be investigated without their interference? We seriously doubt that notion. Surreal dramatists would be excited to play the ‘anarchist-via-civil-society’ role.

Published in: on January 6, 2011 at 01:36  Comments (2)