DAP calls for an all-party inquiry into the allegation of Malaysia’s role in the international nuclear black market so that the exoneration of SCOPE and Kamaluddin Abdullah Badawi could be completely credible as being the result of an independent, impartial and thorough investigation
by Lim Kit Siang
(Penang, Saturday): DAP calls for an all-party inquiry into the allegation of Malaysia’s role in the international nuclear black market so that the exoneration of SCOPE and Kamaluddin Abdullah Badawi could be completely credible as being the result of an independent and impartial investigation.
Although the Inspector-General of Police, Datuk Seri Mohamed Bakri Omar has cleared Scomi Precision Engineering Sdn. Bhd. (SCOPE), and in consequence Kamaluddin Abdullah Badawi as the major SCOMI shareholder, of complicity in the production of components for Libya’s uranium enrichment programme for nuclear weapons, Bakri’s 12-page report released yesterday was unable to address many questions which affect the credibility of the outcome of the police investigations.
Although Bakri said the police investigation took an open and transparent approach, the nagging question is whether it was fully independent, impartial and thorough, as the police is directly under the responsibility of Abdullah who is also the Home Minister and the indirect involvement of his son, Kamaluddin Abdullah Badawi, in the allegation.
What is disturbing is that two weeks ago, Bakri issued a statement entitled “Allegation that Malaysian Company Makes Nuclear Component Baseless” as the outcome of initial police investigations, which is totally contradictory to the thrust of his 12-page statement yesterday, that the management of SCOPE was unaware that the exported components were part of certain centrifuge units bound for Libya for its nuclear weapons programme and his call on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to investigate five Europeans and two Turks over their roles in the black marketeering of components for nuclear weapons.
The police reached these conclusions based on the questioning of Sri Lankan businessman, B.S.A. Tahir, who allegedly worked with the top Pakistani nuclear expert. A.G.Khan in supplying centrifuge components to Libya’s uranium enrichment programme.
Bakri said yesterday that the Director of the Malaysian Special Branch was informed by two intelligence representatives from the United States and Britain, i.e. the CIA and MI6, on their investigations into the international nuclear black market network as far back as November 10, 2003, following the confiscation of SCOPE manufactured centrifuge parts on a Libyan-bound ship in Italy on October 4, 2003.
This resulted in the police launching an investigation to find out the real situation and its implications to the interest and security of Malaysia.
Bakri said: “Pursuant to this investigation, the Prime Minister was briefed on 13 Nov 2003. He ordered a detailed and transparent investigation to be expedited. At the same time, the Inspector-General of Police was informed. He gave an order to continue with the investigation had been given.”
This paragraph raised many questions: When was the police investigation started – before or after the briefing of the Prime Minister, as the public had been under the impression that Abdullah had instructed the police to investigate the allegation “without fear or favour” only sometime earlier this month. When was the Inspector-General of Police first informed?
Furthermore, why after two months of investigations, the emphasis of Bakri’s statement on “initial police investigations” on February 4 is so different from the thrust of his 12-page final report yesterday?
The police investigations should be used as the basis for the all-party inquiry into the allegation of Malaysia’s role in the international nuclear black market so that the exoneration of SCOPE and Kamaluddin Abdullah Badawi could be completely credible as being the result of an independent, impartial and thorough investigation.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman