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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Probe into Ali Rustam's speech

PETALING JAYA (The Sun, Oct 23, 2007): The Prime Minister has asked his officers to verify compliants that Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam made disparaging remarks against other menteris besar at the Malacca People's Progressive Party (PPP)'s annual general assembly last week.

Sources said Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had asked the officers to investigate complaints made by PPP members that the Umno vice-president had, besides asking the PPP to leave the Barisan Nasional, also insulted other BN and Umno leaders.

Mohd Ali, who opened the PPP state convention on Oct 15, had in his speech told the PPP that it could leave the coalition if it was not satisfied with the lack of seat allocation. What did not make the news was his alleged use of disparing remarks made about other leaders.

Following his speech, Mohd Ali told journalists covering the event that his remarks were meant for delegates and that they should not publish it.

"There is decorum to be practised among BN members. They don't go around talking bad about fellow members. So the PM is concerned about this," said a source. "The PM has already asked his aides and officers to investigate."

"We don't know how the PM is going to deal with it, but the findings will be discussed in closed doors at the Umno Supreme Council meeting since the alleged remarks were directed at Umno members," said another source, adding that the PM's aides are in the midst of obtaining a recording of the day’s events to verify the accusations.

“If proven true, Ali Rustam will be asked to explain and may face censure," the source added.

When contacted, PPP president M. Kayveas declined comment, merely saying he has informed Abdullah of Mohd Ali's remarks.


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