In the ding dong battle between Dr Mahathir and AAB over their sons’ profiting gi-normously in business contracts from their parents’ patronage, Dr Mahathir dropped a bombshell, but let’s look at the start of their Battle of the Sons.
Dr Mahathir had started the battle rolling by criticising AAB’s son and the latter's Scomi Bhd’s involvement in government projects. Mahathir has alleged that Scomi - controlled by Abdullah’s son Kamaluddin - received numerous government contracts since Abdullah took office in 2003.
In retaliation, documents pertaining to the business dealings involving Mahathir’s children miraculously started to circulate on the internet.
Sources in the know said this had been being done to put Mahathir on the defensive. One of the documents being circulated in a ‘pro-Umno’ blog is the agreement letter to appoint Opcom as the supplier of fibre optics worth RM214.2 million to TM. The letter, dated Oct 7, 2003 and bearing the Finance Ministry letterhead, showed that the contract (for Mahathir’s son) was obtained through direct negotiations and not via a tender process.
However Dr Mahathir retorted that his son Mukhriz his son went through the proper channel to obtain the Telekom’s deal.
But Dr Mahathir is a man who likes to attack rather than defend, and that’s when he dropped the N-weapon of revelation. In the Battle of the Sons, the spectre of AAB's all powerful SIL was raised again.
Dr Mahathir tells us that after he had retired, the contract won by his son was scrapped. His son Mukhriz was forced to beg the ‘powerful’ SIL to restore the contract.
Though it was eventually restored, the project for Mukhriz was slashed up to 15%
'... slashed up to 15% ...'? I am not sure what the Malaysiakini report is implying - that Mukhriz was left with 15% of the original RM200 million contract, or he was given 85% of it, with 15% slahed off?
That’s the problem with the standard of Malaysiakini reporting lately – poorer standard of English and indeed editing.
But regardless of the amount, if true, what surprises me – bullsh*t, I lied, I am not surprised but just being rhetorical – that a non-minister like the SIL (his only political appointment is UMNO Youth deputy chief, though his only but most powerful government appointment was advisor to PM AAB) had to be begged by Mukhriz to have the Opcom-TM project reinstated.
What a powerful non-minister!
Now, AAB might have denied this - and we know that AAB has denied a lot of un-deniables - but it showed what critics had claimed all the while, that Khairy influenced and I believe still influences the PM’s decisions, and virtually acted as the country’s de facto prime minister.
What an even more powerful non-minister! But of course, if indeed he's the de facto PM!
Again, if true, I wonder whether Khairy enjoyed making the son of his FIL’s predecessor’s son crawled. I wonder too whether this act of humiliation suffered by Mukhriz had hardened the Grand Ole Man’s heart against the SIL?
I was told that the reason Anwar Ibrahim had fallen was the plot by other factions against him, rather than Mahathir wanting him out. The other factions were worried about Anwar’s faction (rather than Anwar himself) ‘taking no prisoners’ in the fight over UMNO’s cake.
Is there a lesson for UMNO here, that unless the Malaysian cake is nicely divvied up in the traditional kampung style of a piece for every faction in UMNO, the rest of the disadvantaged kampung folks would turn against the ‘grab-all’ faction?
A sort of frenzied gory attack among sharks and piranhas!