“The submarine was not allowed to dive because of a slight problem which could affect its safety. This is a normal safety procedure for any submarine operator which observes very strict safety measures.”
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, replying to questions by Members of Parliament (MPs) in the Dewan Rakyat on the purchase by the Royal Malaysian Navy of two Scorpene submarines, and the problem the navy faced with the vessels. Ahmad Zahid was reported as saying these problems were commonly experienced by other submarines. (Source: Don’t leak security matters, MPs warned, theSun, 17 March 2010)
“The submarine purchased by the Malaysian government cannot dive and the weaponry which was purchased has clearly expired.”
Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar, in an interview titled NEP Dinilai Menghambat with Indonesian daily Kompas on 5 Aug 2010. She was asked to comment on the alleged scandal surrounding the Malaysian government’s purchase of two French Scorpene submarines. (Translation source: I am no traitor, Nurul tells the ‘patriot’, Free Malaysia Today, 20 Aug 2010)
“Although we may have differences in opinion, we should stick to the truth and not go to the extent of damaging the country’s image, especially in matters concerning national defence.”
“As a member of parliament, she should have been more ethical. But the manner in which she disparages the Malaysian Armed Forces is utterly disgraceful.”
Ahmad Zahid, commenting on the police report lodged by the Royal Malaysian Navy against Nurul Izzah. The minister said defence and national security issues should not be politicised, and accused Nurul Izzah of undermining Malaysia’s image. He also described her as a “traitor”. (Source: Don’t Politicise National Defence Issue – Ahmad Zahid, Bernama, 19 Aug 2010)
“She said our submarines could not dive and the weapons purchased were old. This is indeed an insult to the Royal Malaysian Navy and is like an invitation for other parties to launch attacks on our country.”
Former PKR Youth deputy chief Muhammad Zahid Md Arip, speaking to reporters after lodging a police report against Nurul Izzah over her interview with Kompas. He said Nurul Izzah had given false information about the New Economic Policy, besides speaking critically of the submarines. (Source: Police Report Lodged Against Nurul Izzah for Tarnishing Country’s Image, Bernama, 23 Aug 2010)
“If it is true that the minister is a patriot, why then is he not supporting the MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) probe on the commission paid to Perimekar Sdn Bhd for the purchase of the Scorpene submarines as stated by the Dewan Rakyat speaker on July 2?
“Is it not the trait of a true traitor who uses public coffers to pay the high costs for the submarine to the government’s ‘golden boy’ (Abdul Razak Baginda) consulting company and to purchase equipment or the multiplied cost of projects to fill the pockets of the ‘chosen ones’?”
Nurul Izzah, refuting Ahmad Zahid’s claim that she had betrayed the country with her Kompas interview. She said ministers who abused their powers and who were corrupt were the real traitors.
Ahmad Zahid has dismissed the need for corruption investigations into the commission of €115 million (RM575 million) which Perimekar Sdn Bhd, owned by Abdul Razak, received for the Malaysian navy’s purchase of the submarines. However, the sale of the submarines by French shipbuilder DCNS is being investigated by the French authorities. (Source: I am no traitor, Nurul tells the ‘patriot’, Free Malaysia Today, 20 Aug 2010)
“… I would like to bring up a statement made by the minister on the very same day who said that technical problems like this are also faced by many other countries all over the world.
“If this information regarding the status of submarines is available openly all over the world, where is the rationale with regards to my statement threatening national security?”
Nurul Izzah, who also noted that her comments about the submarines in the Kompas interview were based on the official answer of the Defence Ministry in Parliament on 17 March 2010. She pointed out that a 6 Aug Bernama report, which revealed that the navy was only conducting its integrated navy exercise once a year instead of three times in order to save cost, was a greater threat to national security. (Source: I am no traitor, Nurul tells the ‘patriot’, Free Malaysia Today, 20 Aug 2010)