KUALA LUMPUR: The allegations made by blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin concerning the "fake ashes" of Chin Peng was an attempt to divert public attention.
The allegation against deputy Defence Minister Senator Liew Chin Tong by the blogger was seen as an attempt to draw attention away from the ongoing abuse of power court cases involving two former defence ministers.
The allegations were also meant to confuse the public on the Defence White Paper (DWP) tabled by Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu at the Dewan Rakyat on Monday.
These were the details in a police report lodged by Liew’s special officer Izmil Amri on behalf of the deputy defence minister, at the Dang Wangi police headquarters, here, today.
“Raja Petra has slandered Liew by accusing the latter of supposedly planning to bring Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) leader Ong Boon Hua or Chin Peng’s ashes home,” he said.
Izmil was referring to Raja Petra’s blog entry yesterday, titled "The Fake Ashes of Chin Peng".
The post was published on Malaysia Today’s website.
The article alleged: "This idea of smuggling Chin Peng’s ashes into Malaysia was mooted by Chin Tong, DAP’s strategist and mastermind, months before the Tanjung Piai by-election last month."
Raja Petra also claimed that according to Liew's inner circle, the ashes were not Chin Peng’s ashes at all.
"Liew Chin Tong came out with this ruse of Chin Peng’s 'ashes'," the overseas-based blogger claimed.
Izmil said that the police report was made to facilitate investigation under Section 499 of the Penal Code and the Defamation Act 1957.
“We are also contemplating a civil suit and are in discussion with our lawyers,” said Izmil.
He stressed that at no time did Liew make any comments concerning Chin Peng’s ashes.
“This slander is aimed at diverting public attention on some of the main issues this week, including the tabling of the DWP and the on-going abuse of power court cases involving two former defence ministers.
“We urge the public and servicemen to refer to credible media channels.
“Avoid sources that depend on a ‘bowl of rice’ to produce slander and fake news, just to grab attention and reap advertising profits,” said Izmil.
Liew yesterday dismissed allegations that he had mooted the idea of smuggling Chin Peng’s ashes into the country and called Raja Petra’s blog posting malicious and serious.
News reports stated that Chin Peng’s ashes were brought home from Thailand this year on Sept 16, the anniversary of his death, which is also the Armed Forces Day and Malaysia Day.
It was said that his ashes were scattered by his supporters into the Lumut sea off his hometown in Sitiawan and across the Titiwangsa mountain range.
It sparked a public outrage, especially among ex-servicemen who had fought against the CPM during the Emergency period of the communist insurgency between 1968 and 1989.
However, former inspector-general of police (IGP) Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Noor said although there was no formal agreement between the government of Malaysia and the CPM for Chin Peng's ashes to be brought home, he did not see it as wrong.
The CPM had formally laid down its arms following the Hat Yai Peace Accord signed between the government of Malaysia and the CPM on Dec 2, 1989 (in the presence of Thai government officials).
Chin Peng died in Bangkok on Sept 16, 2013, at the age of 90, after spending years in exile in Thailand.