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Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak

KUALA LUMPUR – The High Court here today set Aug 25 for case management of a defamation suit over oil subsidy filed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and his wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, against Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) vice-president Mohd Rafizi Ramli and an online news portal owner.

Judicial Commissioner Rohani Ismail set the date in chambers in the presence of lawyers Nor Emelia Iszeham, who represented Najib and Rosmah; Ng Siau Sun, for Mohd Rafiz, and Joanne Leong who represented the ‘Media Rakyat’ news portal owner Chan Chee Kong.

Leong told reporters that Rohani fixed the date to inform parties involved on the progress of an appeal application by Mohd Rafizi and Chan against a Court of Appeal’s decision in striking out their defence of fair comment in the suit.

Yesterday, the Federal Court allowed an application for leave by Mohd Rafizi and Chan to appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision.

However, no date was fixed to hear the appeal.

On Nov 29 last year, the Court of Appeal allowed an application by Najib and Rosmah to strike out the defence of fair comment by Mohd Rafizi and Chan.

Najib and Rosmah filed the suit on April 16, 2015, claiming that Mohd Rafizi, who is also Pandan member of Parliament, had made disparaging statement against them at a forum on oil subsidy in Bandar Tun Razak on Nov 22, 2014.

The couple also claimed that Mohd Rafizi’s speech was recorded by Media Rakyat and uploaded by Chan or his assistant on Media Rakyat’s YouTube and portal.

Najib and Rosmah further alleged that Chan had also shared the recording in Media Rakyat’s Facebook account which could be freely accessed by Internet users worldwide.

The couple is seeking general, aggravated and exemplary damages deemed fit by the court, interest and costs.- BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today called on Muslims to continue exercising patience through all trials and tribulations although Ramadan is coming to an end.

He said trials in life were a test to gauge ones patience and faith, and fasting during the holy month was one way to build up the virtue of patience.

“Bearing hunger and thirst, feeling what it’s like for those who are underprivileged requires a high level of patience, and the same goes for performing supplementary prayers throughout Ramadan.

“Imagine how glorious could be the virtue of patience, when there are 43 verses explaining about it in the Quran,” he said on his blog post at www.najibrazak.com.

Najib, who also cited Prophet Muhammad’s struggle in fighting for Islam, said despite the many challenges, abuses and resistance faced by the prophet, it was because of patience that Islam was successfully spread to the people.

“Hence, I hope that we all draw inspiration from the patience of the Messenger of Allah in the face of adversity, because Allah has promised victory to those who are patient,” he said. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – The Barisan Nasional will remain an investor-friendly government, making Malaysia an attractive destination for foreign direct investments (FDI) from around the world, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said today.

He said Malaysia continued to welcome investors from abroad, and to work with Malaysian businesses for the benefit of both investors and the locals.

“Whether the investments are from China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, the United States or Singapore, they add value to our economy, create more jobs, bring in new technologies. You are certainly very, very welcome to invest in Malaysia,” he said when officiating at the ground-breaking for the Bukit Bintang City Centre (BBCC) and Mitsui Shopping Park LaLaport KL (LaLaport KL) development here.

Najib said other global corporations from all over the world would be able to see that Malaysia continued to be an attractive investment destination.

Citing companies such as Mitsui Fudosan, which had developed the first Mitsui Outlet Park near the KL International Airport in partnership with Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad in 2015 and the second phase expansion of which was slated to open early next year, Najib said these continuous investments were a great testament to investors’ confidence in Malaysia’s long-term prospects.

The Prime Minister said investors should also disregard what the opposition said about FDI as their claims were reckless, baseless and had some racist undertones.

“As far as this government is concerned, we will continue to be an investor-friendly government,” he added.

BBCC, sited on 9.4 acres (3.8 hectares) where the former Pudu Prison once stood, will be a fully integrated lifestyle and business centre.

LaLaport KL, which is a key component of the development with a net lettable area of 0.9 million square feet, will become the first LaLaport KL branded shopping mall in Southeast Asia when it opens in 2021.

Najib said BBCC was a significant national-level development as it was a successful example of the kind of public-private collaboration that the government was keen to encourage.

He said he was also happy to note that the BBCC project, together with the impressive Mitsui Mall, was yet another mode of how the Economic Transformation Programme was bearing fruit in terms of attracting foreign investments while helping Malaysian companies to grow and expand at the same time.

“I am certain this iconic development will draw people from near and far, and with our investor friends from Japan working in partnership with the Malaysian joint developers, I am confident that BBCC will succeed in further uplifting the image of Kuala Lumpur as an international modern metropolis,” he said.

BBCC Development Sdn Bhd, the developer of BBCC, is a consortium comprising three companies, namely the government-linked company Urban Development Authority (UDA), which is the landowner, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and property developer EcoWorld Group. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – The strengthening of bilateral economic relations between Malaysia and Japan offers huge potential for both countries, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“Malaysia, with its diversified, robust and open economy is the perfect gateway to ASEAN for Japanese firms,” he said at the groundbreaking ceremony of the Bukit Bintang City Centre (BBCC) here today.

Najib said the government would work closely with the Japanese Ambassador to Malaysia, Dr Makio Miyagawa, to facilitate the entry of more investors and tourists from the country.

In 2016, Japan ranked Malaysia as its fourth largest trading partner with bilateral trade at RM120 billion.

The Prime Minister said the strong trade and investment relations between both nations were underpinned by the Malaysia-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement.

Malaysia and Japan will mark the 60th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations this year.

In giving an example of Malaysia-Japan collaboration, Najib quoted the BBCC project which has managed to attract the leading real estate group in the land of the rising sun, Mitsui Fudisan Co Ltd, to invest in what will be the mega project’s RM1.6 billion retail mall.

Located on a 7.85 hectare site on what was the old Pudu Jail, the BBCC is worth RM8.7 billion in gross development value.

It comprises a retail mall, an entertainment hub, a four-star hotel, two blocks of strata offices, and five blocks of serviced apartments, and a 80-storey three-in-one signature tower housing corporate offices, which has a five-star hotel and luxury residences.

Phase one, involving 50 per cent of the project, is scheduled for completion by December 2020.

Najib said BBCC together with Mitsui Mall is yet another model of how Malaysia’s Economic Transformation Programme is bearing fruit in terms of attracting foreign investments.

He pointed out that the Japanese were already among the top foreign buyers for the residential units in the BBCC project.

“Malaysia remains the top retirement destination for Japanese, thanks to our stable economic and political environment, temperate climate and affordable living standards,” he said.

As an open and diversified country, Najib said Malaysia continued to be an attractive investment destination.

“We welcome foreign direct investments, irrespective of whether from Japan, China, Saudi Arabia, the United States or Singapore.

“If you add value to the Malaysian economy, provide more jobs, bring in new technologies and add to the export value, among others, you are certainly very welcome to invest in the country,” he added.- BERNAMA

KANGAR – Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today advised the people to elect leaders who are really able to govern the country and not self-indulgent leaders who are even prepared to nominate themselves to be the prime minister.

The Prime Minister said that while UMNO and the Barisan Nasional remained consistent in serving the people, the opposition was in disarray and was incapable of taking care of the people.

“Nobody has the right to be the prime minister unless it is through the process of elections. In a parliamentary democracy, the party which wins the most number of seats is eligible to form the government and appoint a prime minister.

“One cannot bargain to be the prime minister, as was happening now in the opposition. Since independence, the Prime Minister has come from UMNO because UMNO had the most number of seats in Parliament,” he said at the ‘Prime Minister with the Perlis UMNO Grassroots Leaders’ event at Dewan 2020 here.

Najib’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Perlis UMNO Liaison Committee chairman Datuk Seri Dr Shahidan Kassim and Perlis Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azlan Man were also present at the event that drew almost 3,000 UMNO members. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Good news for civil servants! The government has decided to build 200,000 units of houses under the 1Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Programme, double the number originally targeted.

This was disclosed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak at the handing over of keys to owners of the Selasih 1Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Scheme in Precinct 17 here today.

Najib, who is also Finance Minister, said Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa had made the proposal to double the number of units.

He also said that the government wanted to ensure the well-being and comfort of all civil servants.

“It is the cherished dream of every individual, more so those who are married, to own an affordable house suitable to one’s capability, taste and needs.

“Of course, the house must be suitable in accordance with the size of the family, affordable in terms of monthly salary deductions and in the vicinity of modern facilities such as kindergarten, recreational areas, surau and so on.

“It should also be of high quality and not far from the workplace,” he said at the event which was also attended by Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Urban Well-being, Housing and Local Government Minister Tan Sri Noh Omar, Ali and Putrajaya Corporation president Datuk Seri Hasim Ismail.

On April 23, the government had announced it would build 100,000 units of houses throughout the country under the 1Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Programme.

Najib said 3,563 units of these houses had been completed and occupied.

He said the prices of these houses were lower than the market prices of between RM200,000 and RM300,000 depending on the size. For every unit, the government provides a subsidy of between RM25,000 and RM38,000 depending on the size.

Najib also said that Putrajaya Corporation had agreed that the monthly maintenance payment for these houses be reduced from 20 sen to 16 sen per square feet.

He said that for the Putrajaya project incorporating these houses that was launched on April 18, 2013, the government planned to build 17,530 units in three phases that would be completed by 2020.

“Today, civil servants in Gred S41 and below are the proud owners of 1,000 units of the houses in Precinct 17,” he said, adding that Selasih was among the best of the housing projects provided by the government. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Tan Sri Isa Samad voluntarily relinquished his position as Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) Chairman, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He also said that Tan Sri Dr Sulaiman Mahbob had been appointed Acting FGV Chairman with immediate effect and Isa had been named acting Chairman of the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD).

His appointment is also with immediate effect.

Najib said he had earlier met with Isa and former Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Idris Jala to discuss in depth FGV’s future and Isa’s role.

“Isa voluntarily agreed to relinquish his position as FGV Chairman. In appreciation of Isa’s role, I agreed to appoint him the acting SPAD Chairman,” he told a media conference after handing over keys to owners of the 1M Public Servants Housing Programme (PPA1M) Selasih, here today.

Najib said internal action would be taken to determine the legal process and through the FGV Inquiry Board on those actions against the FGV Chief Executive Officer Datuk Zakaria Arshad and three other individuals directed to go on leave from June 6.

“This is necessary as it represents the governance principle of a public listed company. The investigation does not mean they are guilty. The FGV Board will make a just decision as soon as possible,” he added.

Other than Zakaria, the others directed to go on leave are the FGV Chief Financial Officer Ahmad Tifli Mohd Talha, FGV Trading Chief Executive Officer Ahmad Salman Omar and Senior General Manager Delima Oil Products, Kamarzaman Abd Karim. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak wants players in the creative fields to cooperate with the government in instilling humanitarian values in their works towards moulding a society that is in line with the National Transformation 2050 (TN50) vision.

Conceding that there was a vacuum in Malaysian society today on the issue of identity and race, he said this (vacuum) made the process of nationhood not yet firm and strong.

“We have a social problem. In the last day or two, we heard about gangsterism and bullying which became the focus of society.

As such, I hope you will play your respective roles to instill noble humanitarian values in our society,” he said at a breaking-of- the-fast event at Seri Perdana here today.

Over 2,000 guests comprising literary figures, humanists, writers, cartoonists and artistes attended the event, which was held for the first time with the prime minister. The prime minister’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor was also present.

Sixty arts association were also involved including the Federation of Writers Associations (Gapena), Malaysian National Writers Association (Pena), Malaysia National Broadcasters Associations, Malaysian Artistes Association (Seniman), Malaysian Film Producers Association (PFM) and the Malaysian Entertainment Writers and Journalists Association (Karyawan).

Recently, the nation was rocked by the death of cadet officer at Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia (UPNM), Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnian, 21, and a youth T. Nhaveen, 18, after they were cruelly abused and assaulted in bullying incidents.

Commenting further, Najib said the government not only wanted to develop the best infrastructure for the nation but also to build a civilisation with high noble values.

“The message can be given in the works of all of you in a partnership which can be nurtured between the government and all of you so that we can create a new society in line with our TN50 vision,” he said.

Meanwhile, the prime minister announced a sponsorship package to perform the Umrah (minor haj) for 25 selected individuals from among the authors, artistes, arts and creative activists and humanists, intellectuals and broadcasters.

Najib said priority would be given to those who had never performed the Umrah and the less well-to-do.

“This is a sign of our sensitivity and proof the government views seriously the welfare and lot of the arts and creative people,” he said.

He said those picked would perform the Umrah after this year’s haj season.

In the meantime, he said that he was also prepared to consider a request that 1Malaysia People’s Housing (PRiMA) units be also allocated to arts activists.

“This is the government’s pro-active effort to help those in this group who are needy, other than appreciating their deeds and sacrifices all these while to society, religion and country,” he said.

Based on the outcome of the TN50 discourse with the group on May 17, Najib said the government, though the Urban Well-being, Housing and Local Government Ministry (KPKT) had also agreed to create a special quota for arts activists to get housing benefits via the People’s Housing Programme (PPR) in Simpang Dua and Kepong, Selangor. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today paid tribute to all fathers in conjunction with Father’s Day today.

In his latest tweet @NajibRazak, the prime minister described that raising children was a tremendous responsibility yet an incredible privilege.

“To all fathers out there, Happy Father’s Day!” he tweets.

Father’s Day which celebrates the contribution that fathers and father figures make for their children’s lives is usually celebrated on the third Sunday of June. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – The government has always emphasised on women’s significant role when formulating the country’s policies, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

Numerous endeavours, he pointed out, had been initiated to empower women both in the corporate and social sectors.

“We want to produce many more ‘heroines’ who are looked up to in their respective fields.

“I am confident that women could realise their full potential through the opportunities offered by the government, God willing,” he said in his latest blog entry najibrazak.com, with the heading, ‘Kehebatan Tokoh-Tokoh Wanita Dalam Sejarah’ (The greatness of women in history) .

He noted that the role of women was not merely as mother and wife but has a major impact on the development of a society or nation.

“As the Malay saying goes, ‘Tangan yang menghayun buaian mampu menggoncang dunia’ (The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world),” he said.

Najib cited Saidatina Siti Khadijah RHA who not only was a very successful businesswoman looked upon as a role model for her vast contribution but the main source of inspiration for Rasulullah SAW (Prophet Muhammad).

“We also acknowledge the wisdom of Saidatina ‘Aishah RHA as an educator, and the courage of Nusayba binti Ka’ab al-Ansariyah, who defended Rasulullah SAW in the Battle of Uhud,” he said. – BERNAMA