Happy? Yes, Minister

Published in: on July 4, 2014 at 16:00  Leave a Comment  

Quod erat demonstratum

Tony “F1 Fucker” Fernandes

F1 wannabe-owner Tony Fernandes sold off his Caterham Formula 1 Team to a consortium of Swiss and Middle Eastern owners, who are led by former Midland and HRT F1 principal Colin Kolles.

BBC story:


F1: Caterham team is sold by Tony Fernandes

By Andrew Benson
Chief F1 writer
The Caterham F1 team has been sold by owner Tony Fernandes to a Swiss and Middle Eastern consortium.
The new owners will be advised by former Midland and HRT team principal Colin Kolles, and they will continue to race under the Caterham name.
Caterham in F1
Best race finish: 11th – Vitaly Petrov at the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix
Best team finish: 10th (2010, 2011, 2012)
Former Dutch F1 driver, Christijan Albers, will take over the running of the team, assisted by Manfredi Ravetto.
“We are aware of the huge challenge ahead given the fight at the bottom end of the championship,” said Albers.
“Our target now is to aim for 10th place in the 2014 championship.
“We are very committed to the future of the team and will ensure it has the necessary resources to develop, grow and achieve everything it is capable of.”
Both Caterham drivers, Sweden’s Marcus Ericsson, and Kamui Kobayashi of Japan, have failed to collect a point from eight races and the team are last in the Constructors’ Championship.
Malaysian businessman Fernandes, who is also the chairman of Premier League club Queens Park Rangers, entered F1 four years ago with what was then called Lotus Racing.
The Oxfordshire-based team’s name was changed to Caterham in 2012 after Fernandes bought the manufacturer of lightweight sports cars. Caterham F1 will now have no links with the rest of the Caterham Group, which is still owned by Fernandes and comprises two technology companies as well as the car manufacturing arm.
Frenchman Cyril Abiteboul, who Fernandes had employed as team principal, has left the team and is reportedly returning to work for Renault Sport.
Lotus/Caterham finished 10th in the championship for their first three seasons but finished 11th last year.

Tony Fernandes also owns Premier League club Queens Park Rangers
If they fail to finish in the top 10 again this season, it will cost them millions of pounds in prize money.
Fernandes’ decision to sell Caterham F1 was based on their failure to improve their performance.
On Friday, Fernandes wrote on his Twitter account, which has now been closed: “F1 hasn’t worked, but love Caterham Cars.”


This decision self-proven that Fernandes and partners neither had the cut, intention nor strategic to own, manage and develop an F1 team right from the start.

Instead, the former music executive started the team and was gambling on the bit where deep-pocketed sponsors Petronas and Proton were to jump in and support the financial conundrum  of a low caste F1 team. By the he packaged his team as ‘1Malaysia Team’.

When that failed too, he had to scrooge what ever pittance he has left over from his low-of-the-rung Queen’s Park Rangers football team, which did very poorly to remain in the premier league and eventually was relegated to barclays premier.

Fernandes singularly in a very short time manage to bastardise the ‘Caterham’ brand in several single strokes. The tried to prostitute the brand for a regional charter jet business, which did not take off despite the idea mooted back in 2010.

In short, pretentious-accented Fernandes proven himself in a very short time he cocked things up. Why? He over-sold, he had no substance, his ideas are deffective, he entered into the ill-intent to milk Petronas and Proton for money and fund his project.

It was about getting someone paying for Fernandes to promote his brand at international level, in big time.

So that he could create some controversial about this team, the competition  and the industry. And eventually cash out for a premium.

Quod erat demonstratum.

Published in: on July 3, 2014 at 05:30  Comments (4)  

Kiwi conundrum over Malaysian diplomat

New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully apologises to Prime Minister John Key over the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s handling of Malaysian diplomat Muhammad Rizalman Ismail for alleged burglary and assault of a 21 years old Kiwi woman.

The New Zealand Herald story:

McCully says sorry to Key over diplomat sex case

2:04 PM Wednesday Jul 2, 2014

Crime International Politics

NZ Foreign Minister Murray McCully, left, and Prime Minister John Key.

Murray McCully, left, and John Key.
Foreign Affairs chief executive John Allen has acknowledged his ministry bungled the case of the Malaysian diplomat accused of sexual assault.

Mr Allen said his apology to the Government was for both the shortcomings in the advice given to the Government by the ministry and its management of a serious incident.

“The ministry has fallen well short of its obligations to the Government on this occasion and we take this failure very seriously.

“It is the long-standing policy of the New Zealand government to formally request the waiver of diplomatic immunity in such cases.”

He said the ministry initiate a review of its processes for handling such cases, and said it would likely appoint an independent reviewer.

The review would focus on two areas: the informal communication with the Malaysian High Commission which left open the possibility of a different course of action to that expected by the Government and the fact that the Minister of Foreign Affairs was not sufficiently informed of events.
Earlier today, Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully apologised to Prime Minister John Key for not fully informing him about the Malaysian diplomat before Mr Key spoke publicly on the matter.


Mr McCully revealed late last night that Malaysia may have received mixed messages from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) about whether New Zealand wanted the country to waive diplomatic immunity for Muhammed Rizalman Bin Ismail, who is facing sexual assault charges.

Watch: Malaysia will extradite suspect



The minister told a press conference this morning that the MFAT had fallen short of expectations. He said a “considered process” was underway over the misunderstanding and he could not rule out job losses.

In official talks between New Zealand and Malaysian officials, MFAT clearly stated that it wanted Malaysia to waive immunity for Ismail so he could face the charges in New Zealand.

Government released the official correspondence yesterday to confirm this.

But MFAT also engaged in a series of unofficial discussions, which led to this stance becoming more “ambiguous” for Malaysian officials.

Read more: Malaysian diplomat could still be extradited

Malaysia appeared to conclude from the informal talks that New Zealand was happy for the diplomat to return home and be court martialled instead of facing the charges in New Zealand – contrary to Mr Key’s public statement.

Mr McCully said: “I told the Prime Minister that he had not been given all of the information he should have been given. And I have taken responsibility for that and apologised to him.

“The third-person note was clear and unambiguous, but some of the discussions that occurred because of the complexity of the case would have given the Malaysian officials room to draw the conclusions they did.”

This development would fuel Opposition speculation that New Zealand had done a deal with Malaysia behind closed doors.

The minister would not reveal any further detail about the informal talks, saying it could prejudice the investigation in Malaysia.

Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman said in a discussion with New Zealand officials on May 12, “the New Zealand side had offered an alternative for the accused to be brought back to Malaysia”.

Asked about this, Mr McCully said: “I wouldn’t use those words. But I can understand having gone and looked at the material why his officials might have told him that.”

He had asked MFAT chief executive John Allen to look at MFAT’s actions and whether they were appropriate.

Mr Allen had been asked to investigate why Mr McCully and Mr Key were not given “more timely” information about the informal discussions.

He added: “The unseemly situation you saw yesterday when the Malaysian Foreign Minister and I were talking at odds with each other is something that should not have occurred? My own view is that it falls short of it falls short of the standards we should expect.”

Mr McCully said the victim and her family were also entitled to “a better standard of performance”.

The 21-year-old woman was not consulted by officials before the diplomat left New Zealand.

Ismail followed her home on May 9, where the assault took place. Police arrested him that night and he was charged the next day with burglary and assault with intent to rape.

Mr Key said the flow of information to ministers was “disappointing”.

But he said he would be “very surprised” if any officials found New Zealand’s stance to be “ambiguous”.

“In so much that there’s a degree of ambiguity in the correspondence, it’s correspondence attached to the issuing of a third party notice.

“And the third party notice is formal declaration that we’re asking the country to waive diplomatic immunity. So it’s a very clear statement of intent.”

Read the NZ Government’s letter to Malaysia here:


On 10 May 2014, MFAT had written to the High Commissioner of Malaysia not to invoke the personal immunity status on Rizalman so that the New Zealand authorities could continue investigations.

On 21 May 2014 the Malaysian High Commissioner to New Zealand replied that the Malaysian Government would not waive the personal immunity of Rizalman.

It is obvious that New Zealand authorities did not have enough evidence on Rizalman. And as a diplomat with immunity, Rizalman should not have been remanded as the investigation had been carried on for the past 7 weeks.

It was the right thing to do, to bring Rizalman back and place him under jurisdiction of the Armed Forces where they have the full legal authority to conduct a court martial under the Malaysian Armed Forces Act against one of their own officers, if the allegations are proven. Malaysian Foreign Minister Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman assured that the matter would not be ‘Swept under the carpet’ and gave full commitment that the case would be dealt accordingly.

As for now, the trust and tight working relationship between Wisma Putra and New Zealand MFAT is the key to resolve this matter without compromising the  diplomatic immunity  privileges.

*Updated 1530hrs

The Cabinet decided this morning that WOII Rizalman Ismail would be sent back to Wellington, to face the authorities and the process to sought justice.

Press statement of Malaysian Foreign Minister Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman:



The Government of Malaysia has decided to send back to New Zealand, Second Warrant Officer Muhammad Rizalman Ismail, former Defence Staff Assistant at the High Commission of Malaysia in Wellington, to assist in the investigation for the charges of burglary and assault with intent to commit rape. Mr. Muhammad Rizalman will be accompanied by a Senior Military Officer from the Ministry of Defence.

This decision was conveyed by YB Dato’ Sri Anifah Aman, Minister of Foreign Affairs to his counterpart, the Hon. Murray McCully, Minister for Foreign Affairs of New Zealand this afternoon.

The Malaysian Government is of the view that this decision will provide an opportunity for Mr. Muhammad Rizalman to cooperate fully and assist the New Zealand authorities in the on-going investigations on the allegations made against him. In this regard, the legal principle that one is considered innocent until proven guilty should apply to Mr. Muhammad Rizalman. The Government of Malaysia will provide legal assistance to Mr. Muhammad Rizalman if necessary.

Malaysia has complete faith in the New Zealand legal system and has full confidence that Mr. Muhammad Rizalman will be given fair treatment with dignity as provided under the law.

The Government of Malaysia’s decision is a clear testament of the excellent bilateral relations between Malaysia and New Zealand.

2 July 2014

Published in: on July 2, 2014 at 11:15  Comments (7)  

No sweep under the carpet

The case involving a diplomat with the Malaysian High Commission to New Zealand Muhammad Rizalman Ismail for burglary and assault with the intent to commit rape which caused a public outcry in Kiwiland, would be treated accordingly and the Malaysian Government has no intention ‘to sweep the matter under the carpet’.

The Star story:

Published: Tuesday July 1, 2014 MYT 6:19:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday July 1, 2014 MYT 11:30:49 PM

Malaysia not sweeping NZ sexual assault case ‘under the carpet’



PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Government has ensured a transparent investigation into the incident involving a defence staff assistant who was allegedly accused of sexual assault in New Zealand.

According to the Foreign Affairs Ministry in a statement on Tuesday, the Government said that it is “not sweeping the matter under the carpet”.

It said the Government acknowledged that the incident does not reflect the exemplary conduct and integrity of Malaysians serving abroad.

“The Malaysian Government is committed in ensuring the transparency of the investigation of the case. The Ministry of Defence will not hesitate to take stern action against the accused person under the Armed Forces Act 1972, if it is proven beyond reasonable doubt that the accused is responsible for his alleged misconduct,” the statement said.

In earlier reports, New Zealand was asked to drop all charges against the alleged accused, according to correspondence released by the New Zealand Government on Tuesday.

This came after its Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Mofat) had requested that diplomatic immunity be waived for Muhammed Rizalman Ismail, 38, a defence staff assistant with the Malaysian High Commission in New Zealand.

However, according to the Foreign Affairs Ministry, they were prepared to waive diplomatic immunity of the alleged accused to enable prosecution under New Zealand law.

It said that the Malaysian High Commission in Wellington had a meeting with Mofat’s Deputy Chief of Protocol and New Zealand police officers to discuss the matter.

“During the discussion on May 12, the New Zealand side offered an alternative for the accused to be brought back to Malaysia. It was never our intention to treat the matter lightly.

“With the agreement of the New Zealand side, the accused person and his family returned to Malaysia on May 22,” said the statement.

Muhammed Rizalman was allegedly accused of sexually assaulting a 21-year-old woman at her home in Wellington.

He reportedly followed the young woman back to her home in Brooklyn on the night of May 9 and is alleged to have assaulted her with the intent to rape.

He was brought to court on May 10 for the charges of burglary and assault with intent to commit rape but has since returned to Malaysia.

The incident has created a public outcry in New Zealand, with Prime Minister John Key saying his “preference” was for the alleged accused to be tried under NZ law.


Rizalman, who is a career soldier would be dealt under the provisions of the Armed Forces Act (1972). The ATM Inspector General is expected to conduct their own investigation and sort the matter, under laws governing members of His Majesty’s Armed Forces personnel.

In his media conference Malaysian Foreign Malaysia Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman stated that New Zealand offered the diplomat to be brought back to Malaysia, and be dealt with by Malaysian authorities.

This matter was brought into discussion between the Malaysian Foreign Minister Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman and New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully. The two members of the Commonwealth share common laws for criminal and conduct under military establishments.

New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully’s statement after consulting his Malaysian counterpart Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman:

Murray McCully1 JULY, 2014

McCully receives Malaysian assurances

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has tonight spoken to Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah to clarify any misunderstanding relating to the diplomat who was accused of an attack on a woman and the circumstance involving his return home.

“The Malaysian Foreign Minister is absolutely committed to the alleged offender facing a proper judicial process,” Mr McCully says.

“The individual concerned is a military person and the Malaysian Chief of Defence Force has established a Board of Inquiry process. Minister Anifah assured me that any material provided by New Zealand Police will be placed before the Board of Inquiry.

“The Minister made it clear that he would not allow the actions of one individual to tarnish the reputations of all Malaysian diplomats.

“It is clear to me from my conversation with Minister Anifah that his Government’s decision to decline New Zealand’s request for immunity to be lifted was driven by his Chief of Defence’s desire to put in place a robust judicial process to deal with this matter and his officials’ belief that this would be an outcome acceptable to New Zealand.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has this evening provided me with the correspondence between New Zealand and Malaysian officials on this matter. While the formal request is absolutely unambiguous in seeking the lifting of immunity, it is now clear to me that officials engaged in informal communications over what is a complex case, in a manner that would have been ambiguous to the Malaysian Government.

“Due to the nature of the proceedings that lie ahead, I am unable to be more forthcoming on the matter at this stage. However, I can say that the Malaysian side have acted entirely in good faith.

“I have emphasised to my Malaysian counterpart the New Zealand Government’s commitment to justice for the victim in this case, and my colleague assures me that the Malaysian Government shares this view,” Mr McCully says.


This is a demonstration of very good understanding, trust and diplomatic relationship between the two Commonwealth cousins.

Published in: on July 1, 2014 at 23:30  Comments (3)