The Truth About Khairy Jamaluddin – 30
The Truth About Khairy Jamaluddin continues here:
Part 30 – The Battle Begins: Pekan Boy Strikes Back
It was a dark and stormy night. The Visitor made his way in an unpretentious car along Taman Duta, past the Indian High Commission, and into the private home of Deputy Premier Najib Tun Razak. The car was one of those Wajas you see on almost any road in Malaysia, but the occupant in the shotgun seat was shielded by dark tinted screens which are not regulation windows approved by the JPJ. This was a necessary precaution, given the sensitivity of the meeting. Both men held high offices within UMNO and in the current administration of Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and neither wanted the world to know, especially Khairy Jamaluddin, what they were planning.
The initiator of the meeting is the occupant of the Taman Duta house. Najib Tun Razak emerged from the main hall of the house which had been converted into a temporary surau for the guests he had invited earlier that evening for an informal dinner. By now all 40 of them had left and those who tried to linger (including former editor of New Straits Times Abdullah Ahmad and several former ministers) were persuaded by Najib’s Special Officers to make an early exit. Najib was expecting an important visitor soon, giving the impression as if Najib was going to meet his boss the Prime Minister. But in reality it was someone totally unrelated, except for the fact that both he and Najib were out to discuss how to overthrow Khairy at the next UMNO General Assembly.
The Visitor is a titled person, not yet middle-aged, who has nursed a long grievance against Khairy. Up until recently Najib has refused to see him in private for fear of tipping Khairy off that he is out to remove the young man from UMNO politics. But the time has come for Najib to act. The Rembau boy is about to be slapped politically by the patrician from Pekan. The first blow of the battle for UMNO and the leadership of the government post-Abdullah Badawi has begun.
The Visitor did not step out of his car until it reached the very steps of Najib’s house. He very quickly clambered up the hall, Najib greeting him only when he was inside. The Visitor would have been recognised due to his prominence in Malaysian politics as a serving member of Abdullah’s Supreme Council in UMNO. Any whisper of him meeting Najib would have rocked the capital and made their subject of discussion the speculative frenzy of UMNO.
It was no surprise that Najib was to expose his plans first to his Visitor. For one, the Visitor, like Najib, knew if Khairy continued to be the power behind Abdullah’s throne, both their days were numbered. Najib and the Visitor realised their longevity in politics was highly dependent on the political death of Khairy. There can be no accommodation or feigning of loyalty to the boy whose sole purpose is to become Prime Minister of the country at the age of 40. The only way Khairy could achieve this was to kill off Najib and the Visitor, and both were not going to commit seppuku just to curry favour with Khairy.
Almost everyone in UMNO knows Khairy has only contempt for Najib. According to former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, Khairy has gone so far as to threaten Najib that he holds many of Najib’s secrets, most supplied to him by the Singapore Secret Service. Amongst these are the corrupt dealings of the Deputy Prime Minister during his tenure as Minister of Defence and even after Abdullah had become Prime Minister. Singapore was keen to ensure that Najib stayed away from the office of Prime Minister until they at least had gained all the benefits of Abdullah’s weaker and ‘more friendly’ attitude to Lee Hsien Loong and his government. Also, in the dossier held closely by Khairy, are details of Najib’s scandals. True, after the Anwar Ibrahim episode, many could not care less if Najib buggered a goat, but it was still fodder for the conservative Malay heartland that wanted their leaders to be as pious as saints.
The most damaging attack on Najib would have been the usage of close personal contact Razak Baginda and other personalities to skim off the budget of the Ministry of Defence used in procuring certain machineries. These go into the double digit millions and could easily be proved as Najib’s account holder and nominee in Singapore is someone who sniffs money and follows its scent rather than maintain loyalty to his political master.
Khairy had once remarked to Kalimullah Hassan Masheerul Hassan that removing Najib would be ‘peanuts’. This is the absolute truth. With the control of the media that Khairy has in which even Mahathir Mohamad could scarcely whisper a discouraging word, Najib has no chance to present his own case against accusations by Abdullah and Khairy. A trumped-up levelling of fingers pointing to Najib’s shenanigans would be easier to prove than anything Mahathir had attempted on Anwar Ibrahim. Najib could only weakly defend his record as no one believes what he says. With the po-faced visage that he has been increasingly trying to reduce but failed to achieve, Najib is as convincing a liar as Umi Hafilda when she said she was still a virgin. In other words, no one believes the Pekan Boy even when he is telling the truth.
Mahathir Mohamad learnt through his own contacts that Khairy has worked very hard to gain these documents from Singapore. Much has been offered to obtain them and most of the cost has been borne by the GLCs that now answer to new masters. This is one reason why Mahathir is so seething. When statements were made recently implying some leaders were selling the nation, Mahathir made that accusation in the future tense. He should have made it in the past. The sale has already been made, the price already paid by Singapore, and Khairy has got what he wants: enough to remove Najib from the scene.
Najib’s closest circles, including those who often call Malaysia Today, have often remarked that Najib has no backbone to fight anyone, even a two-legged mangy cat. But this time things have gone too far. Najib knows he would not survive sixty days in prison if he had to face the same fate as Anwar. It has not been easy for Najib to come to this conclusion as he has always been a cautious player. Previously he could count on the support of Mahathir Mohamad as his godfather and his most ardent supporter, however, AND THIS IS OFFICIAL, Mahathir Mohamad no longer supports Najib as the alternative to Abdullah Badawi. Najib has lost so much credibility with Mahathir that the Grand Old Man is now thinking of anointing a new challenger to Abdullah. As far as Mahathir is concerned, Najib is a cowardly politician, unlike his late father who he regards as a mentor. While Mahathir has tried to play the same role to Najib, he has reached his own conclusion that his efforts have failed miserably and Najib does not share the characteristics of his late father. Mahathir has realised after many, many years that Najib is not fit to carry the mantle of successor-in-chief to the legacy of Mahathir.
Currently, Mahathir is still looking for somebody to replace Najib as his blue-eyed boy. He has yet to find one though. Whatever it may be, he is giving Najib one last chance to rise up and defend the old guards’ legacy. Any protestations of loyalty to Abdullah would no longer be tolerated by Mahathir and he is ready to unceremoniously dump Najib as he did Anwar.
In his latest remark upon his return from visiting ailing former Indonesian President Suharto, Mahathir said it would have been better if Najib claimed his place in Ghafar Baba’s grave. He has not been able to defend any of Mahathir’s legacies and is as useful as all the other residents of Makam Pahlawan. While cutting, the remark – made to a former Deputy Chief Minister of Sabah – was the complete truth as Mahathir saw it.
Najib and the Visitor are now laying plans on how to sabotage Khairy’s meteoric rise to the UMNO Vice-Presidency. Yes, you heard it right! Khairy is not going for UMNO Youth Chief. He is targeting the vacant post of UMNO Vice President, so quickly emptied by Isa Samad. Plans are being laid out that all potential challengers such as Mukhriz, Mokhzani and Zahidi Zainul Abidin will concentrate their limited resources on getting support from Pemuda. But it will all come to nought because it will not be the young ones who will give their support to Khairy, but the old ones, paid off handsomely and cowed by threats from Khairy’s supporters. They will announce their undivided support for the youngest Vice President of UMNO since the time of Ghafar or Anwar.
What glory is there of Khairy becoming Youth Chief? Why become a big fish in a small pond when you can become a shark in the ocean? In fact, Khairy has already selected the person who will become his proxy as the UMNO Youth Chief and, again, you read it first, he is not in the current UMNO Youth Exco line-up. But there is a strong agreement that this person will go for the Youth Chief post and get it as Khairy’s proxy, while the boy himself goes for the more exalted rank of Vice President.
Najib’s plan is for the Visitor to be the spoiler. He will play the role of stalking-horse and emerge as the most logical challenger as UMNO Youth Chief. But Najib already knows Khairy is not planning to go for the post of UMNO Youth Chief. All protestations to the contrary have been swallowed up by people such as Joceline Tan and other political commentators. Najib knows that this is all a façade. At the very last moment, the Visitor will announce that he is challenging Khairy for the Vice Presidency or any other post which he might decide to go for. He has made this a personal crusade to block Khairy and tail him wherever he goes and become the biggest stumbling block to the boy’s rise to power. By now, readers would want to know who the Visitor, the former deputy chief minister and Khairy’s proxy for UMNO Youth Chief are.
This is the beginning of a new series of The Khairy Chronicles which will chart the battle between the Old Guard and the Young Turks in UMNO as it happens. Over the next few weeks, these names will be revealed to you. But it is still too early to spoil the fun. UMNO is about to tear itself apart, just like PKR did before this. Revealing the names now would allow Khairy to react and remove his rivals. He will have to wait, just like any other reader of The Khairy Chronicles, for the identity of his bete-noir to be revealed when the time comes.
But one thing that we would like to reveal now is that in this battle between Najib and Khairy, Najib would be the loser. In fact, in the current state of play of the game, Najib has kissed away his last chance of becoming Prime Minister. But this is only one aspect of the battle. There is still the Battle Royale between the Grand Old Man and his Traitor cum Successor….
The Truth About Khairy Jamaluddin continues…in Part 31 – Khairy Chronicles in review continued