4 March 2018
Ho wah foon
DURING the two week-Chinese New Year celebrations, with the tossing of yee sang for better times ahead, the key topic of conversation among the Chinese revolved around the general election.
But the sudden eruption of high-level political attacks on Robert Kuok last weekend sent shockwaves through the community. Since then, the richest man in Malaysia has been the talk of the town.
The onslaught could not be taken lightly as Kuok is not just any ordinary businessman but someone of stature held in high esteem not only in Malaysia and China, but also by the global Chinese community.
It is a known fact that Kuok helped to lay the groundwork for the end of communist insurgency in Malaysia, played a role in easing racial tension after the May 13 racial riots and contributed funds to Umno and MCA during elections.
His generous donations have benefited the poor and rich.
Kuok has always stood tall among everyone.
This round, the criticisms against the tycoon were based on three articles posted by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin on the online portal Malaysia Today.
The most startling allegation made by the controversial blogger, who has a record of stirring up racial hatred towards local Chinese in past writings, was that Kuok had donated hundreds of millions to the DAP in a bid to overthrow the Umno-led government.
Without verifying the content, Malay critics and senior Umno politicians told Kuok to be grateful to the Government as the tycoon had built his early sugar, rice and flour empire based on his good ties with Umno leaders.
If the vicious attacks on Kuok were allowed to continue, the first casualty in GE14 could be MCA and Gerakan, and ultimately Barisan Nasional, as angry Chinese could be provoked to vote against the coalition in GE14.
And the unintended winner from this latest episode could be the opposition side.
Dr Oh Ei Sun, former political secretary of Najib, offers some explanations to Sunday Star: “Robert Kuok has shown his contempt for the NEP in his book. This may be seen as questioning Malay supremacy and this attitude must be nipped in the bud.”
He adds that Kuok may not be forgiven for stating the obvious, which many Chinese have wanted to voice out but could not for fear of losing business opportunities.
In his memoir, Kuok stated that although the Chinese have played a significant role in the economic development of Malaysia and other South-East Asian nations, many did not receive just and fair treatment.
Apart from ordinary people, the business community is also watching developments linked to Kuok with concern.
“If the issue on Robert Kuok is not handled properly, there will be a negative impact on the sentiment of investors. We are all following these developments,” says a businessman at a CNY dinner.
THIS WAS WHERE IT ALL BEGAN…
Robert Kuok supported the ex-Umno-anti-Umno faction in 1987 and again in 1998. And when a new ex-Umno-anti-Umno faction emerged in 2015, the ANC, Robert Kuok again supported it. The only way to destroy Umno is to split it up into Team A and Team B and support one side to fight the other, or support both sides to fight one another. That has been Robert Kuok’s modus operandi all this while — as DAP’s Superman Hew Kuan Yew said, use Malays to fight Malays.
THE CORRIDORS OF POWER
Raja Petra Kamarudin
What the game entails
This could be classified as a case of political intrigue of the highest order. Robert Kuok, the richest Malaysian, tried in 1987 and 1998 to influence the downfall of Umno but failed on both attempts. This is his last chance to try for the third time, and if he fails this time then Umno is never going to fall for some time to come, and even if it does eventually happen some time in the future, Robert Kuok is not going to be around any longer to see it happen.
Basically, the chess moves involve Robert Kuok stepping in after July 2015 when Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s coup d’etat failed on 29 July and Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak purged those from the ANC (Anti-Najib Campaign) within Umno. When the October 2015 and December 2015 votes-of-no-confidence in Parliament and the Umno Assembly respectively failed, Mahathir realised they needed money, huge amounts of money, if they were ever going to oust Najib.
And this was when Robert Kuok and his RM60 billion wealth came in handy. Robert Kuok already had strong links with DAP through his nephew, James, which had been established a long time ago. Robert Kuok was the main funder of DAP and through his effort many other Chinese tycoons were also extending financial support to DAP. For example, for the ANC”s effort to oust Najib alone, Robert Kuok and his gang of Chinese tycoons had pooled together a budget of RM5 billion, which, of course, involved the financing of GE14 as well, which is estimated to cost Pakatan Harapan RM1.5 billion.
James Kuok and the DAP leadership
But playing the Chinese market alone is not enough. If it was then Umno and Barisan Nasional would already have been toppled back in 2008 or 2013. It required more than just 85% or 90% Chinese votes. It also needed for the Malays to be split into four or five opposing groups. And this was what DAP had been doing since soon after the 2013 general election: dividing the Malays into Umno, PAS, PKR, PPBM and PAN. And to achieve that it required tons of money, which Robert Kuok was able to provide.
Crucial to this game was to dominate the social media. Online portals such as The Malaysian Insight and a team of a few thousand cyber-troopers such as DAP’s Red Bean Army would be needed for this. And this, yet again, would need tens of millions, which is mere dedak (or animal feed) for a billionaire such as Robert Kuok. So Robert Kuok asked Lim Kit Siang and his son, Guan Eng, who were very close to Jahabar Sadiq, to discuss The Malaysian Insight’s financial needs and how they could come in to provide the RM50 million that The Malaysian Insight needs. Ho Kay Tat would also be appointed the de facto editor-in-chief to coordinate the operations from behind the scenes while making sure that the Malay ‘face’ of The Malaysian Insight is not compromised while the owners of the portal would be paid RM2 million a month to ‘play ball’ and offer the portal immunity from any government clampdown.
Read the rest here:
27 February 2018
Under-fire Robert Kuok gave large donations to Umno, MCA
UNDER attack from Umno leaders and accused of disloyalty to Malaysia, the country’s richest tycoon, Robert Kuok, once gave large donations to the ruling Malay party, as well as MCA.
In his memoirs released in Malaysia last December, Kuok said the money he gave to Barisan Nasional parties after independence had been substantial.
“I was often asked to give substantial donations to the ruling parties, Umno and MCA, after independence in 1957. I gave willingly, happily and freely.”
The 94-year-old Hong Kong-based businessman also had close ties with Umno leaders, such as second deputy prime minister Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman.
He also wrote about other forms of national service he had done, such as selling the shipping line he built, the Malaysian International Shipping Corporation, at the behest of then prime minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein, to increase the Malay percentage of shareholding.
Kuok, over the last few days, has come under attack from Umno leaders following articles in blog Malaysia Today accusing him of funding opposition party DAP and wanting to set up a Chinese-led government.
February 26, 2018
Robert Kuok says allegations against him false, unjustified
PETALING JAYA: Billionaire Robert Kuok has denied allegations that he is funding political parties to overthrow the Malaysian government or embarking on a campaign to manipulate the country’s democratic process.
A statement issued by his office said he took the “baseless” allegations very seriously.
He reserved the right to take all necessary steps against web portal Malaysia Today and the author to address the allegations contained in “scurrilous” articles.
“In no uncertain terms, Mr Robert Kuok states that the Malaysia Today articles constitute very serious libel.
“Moreover, the allegations made are false and the attack on him wholly unjustified,” it said.
The statement, which was published by The Star today, pointed in particular to three articles published on the website.
It said Kuok also denied being anti-government vis-à-vis the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN), and being a racist and a “Chinese chauvinist”.
“Mr Kuok holds in the highest esteem the leaders of Malaysia who have throughout their lives done everything they can to contribute to the well-being of Malaysians,” it said.
Media Statement from the Office of Mr Robert Kuok
Last updated on 27 February 2018 – 12:42am
IN the last week, articles have emerged that have cast aspersions on Mr Robert Kuok’s…..commitment to Malaysia and the integrity of the country’s democratic processes. Mr Robert Kuok wishes to state that any assertion that he has forgotten his roots are entirely false.
Mr Robert Kuok would also like to place on record that he has a deep appreciation for the opportunities he has had and recognises the contributions made by Malaysians of all creeds, races and religions towards the development of Malaysia to date, and the continued commitment shared by all Malaysians in ensuring a bright future for the country.
Mr Kuok holds in the highest esteem the leaders of Malaysia who have throughout their lives done everything they can to contribute to the well-being of Malaysians.In particular, Mr Robert Kuok refutes and emphatically denies the false allegations contained in the three articles published on the online blog, Malaysia Today, namely: Malaysian Insight Funder Fingered on Feb 21; Robert Kuok Wants Chinese Rule in Malaysia on Feb 21; and Robert Kuok’s Last Chance at Changing the Government on Feb 23.
The false assertions made in these articles include that he was funding The Malaysian Insight and various political parties with the aim of overthrowing the present government of Malaysia; embarking on a campaign to manipulate the Malaysian political process and democratic system; being anti-government vis-à-vis the ruling Barisan Nasional Party in Malaysia; and being a racist and a “Chinese chauvinist”.
These allegations are untrue, and Mr Robert Kuok expressly denies them in their entirety.
Since the publication of the Malaysia Today articles, further articles have been published in Malaysia on the online portal known as Malaysiakini as well as in The New Straits Times, The Star, The Malay Mail, Utusan Malaysia and Berita Harian, amongst others.
In no uncertain terms, Mr Robert Kuok states that the Malaysia Today articles constitute very serious libel. Moreover, the allegations made are false and the attack on him wholly unjustified.
Mr Robert Kuok takes these baseless allegations very seriously and reserves the right to take all necessary steps against Malaysia Today and the author to address the false allegations contained in the scurrilous articles.
Malaysia’s richest man Robert Kuok to take action against reports he funded opposition party, news portal
Feb 26, 2018, 8:46 pm SGT
PETALING JAYA – Malaysian tycoon Robert Kuok said on Monday (Feb 26) he would take action against the Malaysia Today news portal and its author over what he said were false allegations claiming he was funding opposition parties and a news portal in a bid to overthrow the government.
Mr Kuok’s office issued a media statement citing three articles published on the online blog Malaysia Today, which alleged that he had given money to various political parties and the The Malaysian Insight news portal in order to overthrow the government and install a one led by the predominantly Chinese Democratic Action Party (DAP).
The statement carried by The Star newspaper said the 94-year-old businessman “refutes and emphatically denies the false allegations” made by pro-Umno blogger Raja Petra Raja Kamaruddin in the three articles. The articles were “Malaysian Insight Funder Fingered” published and “Robert Kuok Wants Chinese Rule in Malaysia” – both of which were published last Wednesday – and “Robert Kuok’s Last Chance at Changing the Government” published on Friday.
“The false assertions made in these articles include that he was funding The Malaysian Insight and various political parties with the aim of overthrowing the present government of Malaysia; embarking on a campaign to manipulate the Malaysian political process and democratic system; being anti-government vis-à-vis the ruling Barisan Nasional Party in Malaysia; and being a racist and a ‘Chinese chauvinist'”, the statement said.
“Mr Kuok takes these baseless allegations very seriously and reserves the right to take all necessary steps against Malaysia Today and the author to address the false allegations contained in the scurrilous Malaysia Today articles,” his office said.
Contest in GE14, don’t be a ‘pondan’ – Nazri opens fire on Kuok
Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Abdul Aziz is the latest Umno leader to train his guns on billionaire Robert Kuok.
Speaking to Malaysiakini, he challenged the 94-year-old tycoon, who is based in Hong Kong, to return to Malaysia and contest in the coming general election.
“Don’t be a ‘pondan‘ (effiminate). Don’t be a hen (ayam betina) which hides behind the wall in Hong Kong,” said the Padang Rengas MP, who is known for not mincing his words.
Earlier, when speaking to reporters at his parliamentary constituency in Perak, Nazri lambasted the billionaire as a “coward with no testicles”.
According to China Press, the minister described Kuok as “arrogant” and told him “not to hide overseas and fund DAP”.
Nazri was quoted as saying: “Kuok, we will fight you. Don’t think you are rich.
“If you consider yourself rich, then join politics. Don’t be a coward and hide (overseas), just to fund DAP in order for BN to collapse. BN accepts your challenge.”
Nazri said while Kuok was free to donate to a party of his choice and this was not against the law, the billionaire should not forget that his success is due to BN government’s help.
The minister also claimed that funding DAP was irresponsible and could harm racial unity.
Nazri said many Chinese, although not as rich as Kuok, continued to live in Malaysia to develop the nation together with other races.
“It is better for people like Kuok to surrender their citizenship,” he added.
DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang has denied receiving funds from Kuok or through intermediaries such as the businessman’s relatives in Malaysia.
The issue first came to light following reports in Malaysia Today, which alleged that Kuok was financially backing DAP.
The billionaire’s nephew James Kuok, who was implicated in the articles, denied that his uncle had used him as a conduit to fund DAP’s war chest.
The madness of attacking Robert Kuok
SCHIZOPHRENIA is a disorder that affects a person’s ability to think and behave clearly.
It could be affecting an increasing number of Umno politicians and those charged with charting the ruling party’s strategy in the run-up to 14th general election (GE14).
Has to be.
How else do we explain this sudden fixation with turning Robert Kuok, a billionaire who once called Malaysia home, into a villain?
Apparently, he is interested in dictating the outcome of the polls.
Apparently, he is funding the enemies of Barisan Nasional (BN), including the DAP.
But here’s the irony: over the years, it is the senior Umno politician who has beaten a path to Hong Kong to pay homage to Kuok. Some of them owe their first luxury watch to him while others were beneficiaries of his kindness when their families fell on hard times.
Only some lightweight Umno politicians took exception with Kuok’s views about modern day Malaysia. Even then, the mainstream media glossed over those comments.
Yet, someone in Umno’s war room has now decided to paint Kuok as the money machine behind DAP and the man behind moves to bring down the BN government.
Yes, GE14 is about who can win the biggest slice of the Malay vote. But trying to paint one of Asia’s most respected tycoons as anti-establishment and a puppet master smacks of desperation and clutching at straws.
Really strange strategy given that several of those holding top positions in Umno owe a part of their rise and well-being to him. – February 26, 2018.
New Straits Times
Robert Kuok would not be sugar king without government help
KUALA LUMPUR: “Sugar King” Tan Sri Robert Kuok would not have made his fortune without various government policies that had become a key to his success.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said while it could not be denied that Kuok was hardworking and had rights to pursue wealth, even the richest man in Malaysia needed an opportunity which opened doors to his success.
“Based on my experience, people, whether he is an average person, listed as the richest man in Malaysia or a politician, what are the similarities between them?
“From what I can summarise, when a person receives a key, it can open doors which lead to a better future.
“If we look at the names of the richest people in Malaysia, which (list) may begin with Kuok, who was the one who provided him with the key, which saw him monopolising sugar and rice business?
“Yes, he has rights (to pursue wealth). He is hardworking, perseverant, and disciplined. But that is not enough.
“Everyone needs a key, which through government policies, to open opportunities to bigger success,” Najib said in his speech when opening the Central Zone-level of the Open Interview for 1Malaysia Training Scheme (SL1M) at the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang yesterday.
Don’t forget you owe BN your success, Umno man warns Kuok
A senior Umno leader has warned tycoon Robert Kuok to not forget his roots and how he has emerged as one of Malaysia’s richest man.
Malay-daily Utusan Malaysia quoted Umno supreme council member Tajuddin Abdul Rahman, who claimed the Hong Kong-based billionaire’s wealth was made due to the policies and administration of BN rather than the DAP, and Kuok should be mindful.
“This is the problem when someone is rich, they forget their roots. When by right he became rich from the BN government’s policies, not the DAP’s,” said Tajuddin…..