One thing about the future Prime Minister. He is on the ball. He knows what he is getting into. He fully understands the insidious chicanery that is UMNO. He has lived with the doves and the vipers. He is equipping himself with the necessary armour. He is aware that nothing is black and white in politics, especially the UMNO variety. He is also aware that he cannot trust no body, despite declarations of loyalty. He is also aware that he is in the cross-hair sights of Anwar and the indomitable Raja Petra Kamaruddin. As such he comes upfront with some decisive utterings as reported in NST online:
"I want total support from Umno members and I hope Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his supporters will also give their undivided support when he hands over responsibility to me.
"Please don't attack me and I also hope Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will return to Umno's fold. I want everyone to be united in Umno.
"I want us to be together as a family," he said at a dinner in conjunction with the annual general meeting of Mubarak (Association of Former Barisan Nasional elected representatives) yesterday.
"Perception is more important than reality. (RPK has an excellent piece on this here.)I don't want the people to view Umno as a party where members can serve their personal interest, or one that can give out contracts."
He said in the past, Umno was strong because there was no such thing as negotiated contracts nor money politics.
Najib added that the people were now wise enough to judge if their leaders were sincere and dedicated to their struggle.
I have met him a couple of times in the mid/late 70s when he used to bring the ravishing Tengku Puteri Zainah Tengku Eskandar to the Merdeka Stadium during the Merdeka Tournament. Dang, she was a beauty of the Miss Universe calibre.
Of course I cannot yet forgive him for threatening to bathe his keris in Chinese blood at the TPCA stadium on the eve of Operation Lalang. But I am giving him the benefit that in due time I will forgive but not forget.
I don’t know if there is a conspiracy within BN to undo him. Take these utterings (although aimed at Anwar) of the following:
Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said if Anwar had not committed the alleged crime, he should be willing to provide the sample without delay.
"If indeed he is not involved, give the sample now. He said he did not do anything. So he must give a fresh sample to prove that he did not do it. I want to see the results."
Abdullah said the case could be concluded quickly. "We want this to be resolved fast but (until today) it still cannot be done."
And this one: (also meant for Anwar but could also be a hint to….my perception again)
Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar said Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim should not be worried about giving his DNA sample if he wanted to uphold the truth.
Of course a BN partner has to have its say, like this one:
Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai said DNA tests were a normal procedure in sodomy or rape investigations.
“We should abide by whatever that is needed by the police to help in their investigation,” he told reporters after accompanying Penang Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas in his visit to Sungai Bakap Hospital today.
…………."As a responsible citizen, Anwar should have cooperated with the police.
"Nobody is above the law.
ARE THESE THREE HINTING THAT THE FUTURE PRIME MINISTER SHOULD GO TO COURT TO DISPELL ALL RUMOURS THAT HE IS IMPLICATED IN THE ALTANTUYA EPISODE.
This Zak-on-the-bench is thoroughly distasteful.