Friday, April 15, 2011

Is RPK a Sellout?

There are confusions over the RPK interview shown by TV3 on two consecutive nights. I will NOT help TV3 nor create another one so here is what the Botak Man himself being interviewed word for word published on his own site said:


RPK: I’m no sellout

By Shannon Teoh, The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, April 15 — Controversial blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin insisted today he is still behind the opposition cause and denied that he has sold out after giving an interview to TV3.

He caused a stir two days ago when he said on the national television station that he never accused Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife of being behind the gruesome 2006 murder of Mongolian woman Altantuya Shariibuu.

The editor of the Malaysia Today news portal explained his actions in an email interview withThe Malaysian Insider. The full text is reproduced below.

TMI: You were recently in Australia, meaning you have a passport to travel. Where are you now and where are you based? Will you be coming back to Malaysia soon?

RPK: I am currently in Bali. And no, I will not be going back to Malaysia, at least not until the government changes. If Barisan Nasional remains the government then I shall have to be buried in Brookwood beside my mother when I die.

Why do you ask whether I am coming back to Malaysia? Because of my TV3 interview? If I do a TV3 interview and then return to Malaysia (which would mean I can’t if I did not do that interview) would that not be too obvious that the interview was a sell-out?

Stupid move don’t you think?

TMI: Why did you give the interview to TV3? You have attacked the press, especially mainstream, in Malaysia before. Why trust them? Are there no other avenues?

RPK: Do I need to trust them to give an interview?

I don’t trust you or Malaysian Insider either. I think you are tools for Khairy Jamaluddin and Kalimullah Hassan. Yet you send me this interview and yet I respond.

You came to me. I did not go to you. TV3 also came to me. I did not go to them.

(Note: The Malaysian Insider is not owned by or connected in any way to either Khairy Jamaluddin or Datuk Seri Kalimullah Hassan.)

TMI: Now PKR are calling you a turncoat for what they say is an attempt to discredit Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim. Is this true, or are they overreacting?

RPK: Anyone who whacks Najib, (Datin Seri) Rosmah (Mansor), (Tun Dr) Mahathir (Mohamad), (Tan Sri) Muhyiddin (Yassin), Khairy (Jamaluddin), (Datuk) Mukhriz (Mahathir) and so on is a patriot, Godsend, loyal Malaysian, and reincarnation of Gandhi and Mother Teresa both in one, as far as the opposition is concerned.

Anyone who even mildly criticises the opposition or its leaders is a traitor, a turncoat, has been bought, has sold out, is doing it for money, and much more.

This is typical opposition mentality.

They accuse the government of not allowing freedom of speech. They mean, of course, freedom to criticise the government. But when you criticise the opposition that is not freedom of speech. You are a Judas.

Show me one thing I said in my TV3 interview that I have not said before. Is there anything new I have said in the TV3 interview or am I merely repeating myself?

People say: I merely write in Malaysia Today. How many people actually read Malaysia Today? How many Malaysians access the internet? Very few! Television, however, reaches 97 per cent of the population, they say.

But when I finally get on television they get upset. Why? Do you think TV3 is going to air my interview if I whack Najib and condemn the government? They give me airtime because I criticise Anwar.

You mean I have never criticised Anwar before? Anwar even criticised me in his talk in Sydney, Australia. You can see the video on Youtube. So we have been criticising each other for a long time.

In 2004, I resigned from Suara Keadilan in a huff during the PKR Ipoh convention due to a conflict and concentrated full time on Malaysia Today. So the “feud”, if you want to call it that, is seven years old, not something new.

The only difference between then and now is that, then, my criticism was confined to the Internet. Now it is on national television. That is the only difference. And that is the real issue here.

If I had said what I said on Australian radio and television (which I have) then people would not get upset. But when I say the same on TV3 they get upset. This is because TV3 is owned by Umno. But if TV3 happened to be owned by Anwar Ibrahim they would not mind. It is because it is owned by Umno that they are upset.

The trouble is they associate the opposition with Anwar. I am Rome and Rome is me! We need to change that. Anwar is Anwar and the opposition is the opposition. Anwar is not indispensable. We can’t put the entire future of the opposition just on Anwar.

What happens if Anwar is sent to jail? And there are reasons to believe he will. Does the opposition close down? We must be able to look beyond Anwar. This is not about Anwar. It is about the cause, the fight for change. Sometimes we may need to criticise Anwar to save the opposition.

And have I not said this many times before? So what am I saying now that I have never said before? I am just repeating myself here. Only this time it has gotten onto national television.

Incidentally, what I am saying is what many are also saying. The only difference is: they whisper behind Anwar’s back and praise him to his face. I tell it to his face. That is the only difference.

When Anwar was in jail from 1998 to 2004, how many of these Anwar “diehards” came to Anwar’s house every Thursday night. I used to go to his house on Thursday nights and the “crowd” was only about 100 or so.

Today, many people are Anwar diehards. Let’s see when the government again sends Anwar to jail whether these same people will be in Anwar’s house every Thursday night or whether the “crowd” will dwindle, yet again, to a mere 100.

Nurul Izzah (Anwar) and I went before the Australian Foreign Affairs Committee last month to brief the Parliamentarians about what the government is doing to Anwar and to ask for the help from the Australian government. One month before that I did this TV3 interview (although it just came out).

So, on the one hand I ask foreign governments to help Anwar. On the other hand I also criticise Anwar. Anwar and the cause are two separate issues. I may support one but I may criticise the other because they are two different issues.

TMI: Some have interpreted this as you saying DS Najib and his wife are not involved in the murder of Altantuya. Is this what you’re saying? Or are you still convinced they are involved?

RPK: Have you read my statutory declaration, which is the focus of my first interview? Did I allege they are involved in the murder or did I say that Lt-Kol Azmi Zainal Abidin made that allegation and, therefore, this has to be investigated? What I signed in that June 2008 SD is what I am still saying today.

TMI: People are speculating, as Malaysians do, that you gave this interview for reasons such as money or a deal to allow you to return to Malaysia without being charged or arrested. Your response?

RPK: Malaysians always and only think about money. So they try to read into everything you say or do as being about money. If I praise Anwar and the opposition, it is not about money. It is about the struggle, the cause, ideals, and so on.

Why don’t they also say that you were paid by Anwar to support the opposition? Only when you criticise the opposition and/or Anwar is it about money.

When a person is a thief, he imagines everyone else also as thieves. So when people only think about money, they always think that what you are doing must be about money. It can’t be for other reasons.

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