After minister files counter report, Rafizi claims Latif fears exposure from suing

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Opposition leader Rafizi Ramli claimed today that the minister implicated in the littoral combat ship (LCS) scandal fears getting exposed if he had taken legal action instead.

Rafizi tweeted the allegation this morning following news that Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Dr Abdul Latiff Ahmad had lodged a counter police report against the PKR deputy president, for defamation.

Rafizi suggested the minister didn’t want to risk having to testify in court.

Azman Ghani/The Star

“I dared @drabdlatiff to sue. He is scared of suing so he lodged a police report, no need to show evidence and hope that the police would focus on whether or not Zainab is his wife and not the embezzling of taxpayers’ funds,” the PKR leader wrote, tagging the minister’s Twitter handle.

Dr Abdul Latiff’s aide had accused PKR deputy president Rafizi Ramli of defaming his boss through remarks in connection with the LCS scandal and filed a police complaint last night.

Sayed Ahmad Muizzuddin Al Sayed Mohamad, special officer to the minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of special functions, posted a video on YouTube, saying he had been instructed to file the police report as Rafizi had tarnished the Mersing MP’s reputation with repeated allegations of a second wife named Zainab Mohd Salleh, who had received a contract from the Defence Ministry worth tens of millions of ringgit.

According to a copy of the police report sighted by Malay Mail, the minister’s aide claimed Rafizi had made libellous and slanderous remarks in four blog posts, seven Twitter posts, and one TikTok video.

Rafizi himself had lodged a police report seeking the authorities to open an investigation that Abdul Latiff and the person said to be his second wife are among central figures in the naval ship procurement fiasco.

“I have also lodged a police report about (you) looting money,” the PKR leader said in the same tweet.

“The police can now probe (the minister) pocketing the money too,” he added.

Rafizi has alleged that Zainab Mohd Salleh is Dr Abdul Latiff’s second wife and the owner of Alizes Marine Ltd, a company which LCS funds were funnelled into and that was named in the Panama Papers and Paradise Papers, two controversial lists that were supposedly leaked and detailed how offshore companies were hiding money gained from illicit activities around the world.

Rafizi also dared Dr Abdul Latiff to sue him and two companies — Boustead Heavy Industries Corp Berhad and Alliance IFA (M) Sdn Bhd — that named the minister in their LCS procurement investigative reports for defamation, saying that mere denials are not enough. – MMO