Altantuya topic in Al Jazeera interview made me lose my cool, says Najib

Datuk Seri Najib Razak leaves MACC headquarters in Putrajaya October 24, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Datuk Seri Najib Razak leaves MACC headquarters in Putrajaya October 24, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 26 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak apologised today for losing his cool during an interview with Al Jazeera’s 101 East show, saying programme host Mary Ann Jolley had persisted in talking about the murder of Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu.

The prime minister also said the interview had happened at the same time his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor and sons were being questioned by the police’s Anti-Money Laundering Crime Investigation Team.

“That topic, together with the concern about my family, did get me worked up and I lost my cool for a moment,” he wrote in a statement on his Facebook page.

Najib said he had denied involvement many times over in the murder, and had recently asked his associate to lodge a police report to clear his name.

“I hope Al Jazeera takes this into account and no longer involves my name in this tragic loss of a young mother, as it is simply not true that I was involved despite all the admittedly well-designed politically-motivated propaganda to link me,” said Najib.

In 2015, the news channel had resurrected the controversial murder of Shaariibuu that many have accused the then Malaysian government of covering up.

Jolley in the programme had revealed that she was deported from Malaysia in June that year for reporting on the murder.

In response, Najib told Jolley in the interview today that it was a “good thing” his administration deported the reporter since she was a nuisance, and it would not tolerate the fabrication of lies.

The Pekan MP said on Facebook that the interview had gone beyond the allocated time, and also its scope, but he was happy to answer those additional questions and would not hesitate to return for another interview.

“Overall, I believe I managed to get my views across as truthfully as I could and I consider it a good interview that can help the world understand more about the 1MDB issue from my perspective and to help clear my name,” he said, referring to 1Malaysia Development Bhd.

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