Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 27

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Bloggers Papagomo, Parpukari, the Unspinners named as part of Rosmah’s cybertroopers.

Rohanis Shukri/NST

Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor’s former special officer has today revealed to the Kuala Lumpur High Court that bloggers like Papagomo, Parpukari and The Unspinners were paid up to RM5,000 a month to manage the former’s reputation and image from 2012 to 2018.

Datuk Rizal Mansor said the trio were just part of a long list of bloggers, Facebook users and individuals paid between RM1,500 and RM5,000 a month from the RM100,000 cash he received from Rosmah monthly.

“The amount I paid to all of them varied…I gave Facebookers between RM1,500 to RM2,000 while bloggers were paid RM3,000.

“I gave the team leaders like Papagomo RM5,000 monthly,” he was quoted telling the court.

Noting his willingness to provide the list of all those who received the payment to court, he said there were about 12 to 15 bloggers, 30 Facebook users and four team leaders who received the payment monthly.

He added it was normal for politicians and political parties to engage cybertroopers to promote or propagate political views online.

Rizal said this under questioning by Rosmah’s lead defence lawyer Datuk Jagjit Singh, who wanted him to reveal all those who received payments for being part of Rosmah’s cybertroopers.

When posed with a question regarding the source of the funds, Rizal said he was unaware that the RM100,000 given to him monthly by Rosmah to manage the cybertroopers was actually from a portion of the Prime Minister’s Department’s budget.

According to Rizal, all he knew was that the cash was handed to him directly by Rosmah every month.

“I cannot confirm the source of the funds. All I can tell you is that I got the cash directly from her hands every month,” he said.

When asked if he had any receipts to prove that payments were made to the cybertroopers, Rizal said there was no need for it.

Jagjit then asserted that Rizal did not have any record of the payments, as the latter pocketed most of the money himself.

The lawyer then proceeded to read out the names of several pro-Rosmah bloggers who claimed that they did not receive anything from Rizal even though they were part of the cybertrooper team.

Rizal, however, disagreed with the suggestion and said some of the names read out by Jagjit were not part of his list of bloggers, indicating that the others had all been paid.

Jagjit: Do you have any receipts of the payments made?

Rizal: No. there was no need for it.

Jagjit: There are many who claim that they were not paid. You took a large portion of it for your own personal use.

Rizal: I disagree.

Jagjit: I put it to you, there would have been no need for the team of cybertroopers if you had done your job well.

Rizal: That is subjective.

Jagjit: You failed in your duties because you were soliciting money for your foundation (Yayasan Perdana Ummah) and for your lavish lifestyle?

Rizal: Disagree.

Rizal taking the stand as the 21st prosecution witness had earlier this week revealed that he used to receive RM100,000 monthly from Rosmah to manage a team of cybertroopers when he handled media relations for Rosmah.

Rizal reportedly explained that in 2012, Rosmah had ordered him to establish a team of cybertroopers — individuals employed to disseminate political propaganda on the internet — who were paid RM100,000 monthly and tasked with monitoring critical content on social media.

Rizal also explained that in his capacity as Rosmah’s special officer, he too had made statements to denounce or counter the negative narrative produced against her.

In his earlier statements, Rizal stated that he was hired into a special department under the Prime Minister Department, dubbed the “First Lady of Malaysia” (Flom) office, when Datuk Seri Najib Razak was sworn in as the prime minister in 2009.

Earlier reports:

Sept 15, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 26

Sept 14, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 25

Sept 9, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 24

Aug 19, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 23

Aug 18, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 22

Aug 17, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 21

Aug 5, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 20

Aug 4, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 19

Aug 3, Rosmah’s bribe trial: Day 18

Jul 15. Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 17

Jul 14, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 16

Jul 13, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 15

Mar 12, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 14

Mar 11, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 13

Mar 10, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 12

Mar 9, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day 11

Mar 9, Rosmah’s Ex-Aide Rizal Mansor Now in Witness Protection

Feb 20, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Ten

Feb 20, Witness Tells Rosmah’s Trial Jepak MD Gave RM5 Million to “RM”

Feb 19, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Nine

Feb 18, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Eight

Feb 18, Rosmah’s Lawyer Tears into Madinah’s Testimony

Feb 17, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Seven

Feb 17, Ex-Education Ministry Sec-Gen: Business Partners Fought over RM1.2B Solar Project

Feb 13, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Six

Feb 13, Mahdzir Denies Hiring Lawyer to Broker Deal with AGC

Feb 12, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Five

Feb 12, Rosmah’s Refusal to Leave Accused Dock During Lunch Break Prompts Early Adjournment

Feb 11, Rosmah’s Defence Alleges Mahdzir Private Jets to Macau, Spore, Perth to Gamble

Feb 11, Rosmah’s Defence Lawyer Paints Ex-Minister Mahdzir as Corrupt

Feb 10, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Three

Feb 10, Ex-Minister Tells Rosmah’s Trial: I Wasn’t Bribed, Simply Followed Najib’s Orders

Feb 6, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day Two

Feb 6, Driver Delivered Bags of Cash to Rosmah’s House

Feb 6, Rosmah Allegedly Pressured Ex-Minister to Award Project to Jepak

Feb 5, Rosmah’s Bribe Trial: Day One

Feb 5, Rosmah’s Lawyer Cries Intimidation over MACC’s Probe of Doctor Who Issued MC

Feb 5, RM6M Bribe in RM100 Bills

Feb 5, Rosmah’s Controversial FLOM Division Rebranded After Public Criticism

Feb 5, DPP: Overbearing Rosmah Wielded Considerable Influence