Monday, October 20, 2008


Najib’s Office denies issuing manifesto in bid for Presidency


The Deputy Prime Minister’s Office yesterday denied that Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak has issued a manifesto to back his bid for the Umno Presidency as reported by an internet news portal, Malaysiakini on Sunday. A statement issued by Najib’s office here said that “The Malaysiakini report was therefore ‘patently false and misleading’. “Malaysiakini’s decision to publish the story is extremely unethical as they failed to verify the matter with the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office prior to publication,” it said. It said the conduct of Malaysiakini was regrettable and unacceptable. “Certainly, it is an unfortunate display of negligence and lack of professionalism m news reporting,” it said. The statement was in response to an e-mail published by Malaysiakini, purportedly from a “Najib Support Group” containing a so-called manifesto supposedly linked to Najib, and Malaysiakini, without any verification from the Deputy Prime Minister’s office, had published the content of the e-mail. It said it was important for Malaysiakini to investigate the origin of the malicious e-mail in order for it to clear its name and reputation. “Malaysiakini has apologised to the Deputy Prime Minister on this matter. “Nevertheless, it is our hope that Malaysiakini and other news portals, regardless of their editorial policy, will conduct themselves in an ethical and professional manner. “This false story is the latest move in what is obviously a concerted effort by certain quarters to tarnish the image of the Deputy Prime Minister,” it said. It said indeed, of late, ever since the Umno Transition Plan was brought forward to March 2OO9 there has been a consistent and continuous effort by some website to concoct and publish false and malicious reports aimed a discrediting the Deputy Prim Minister. “We hope the Malaysian public in particular readers of these websites, are able to distinguish truth from falsehood when reading the materials published,” it said. - Bernama