The Wall Street Journal has published a shocking report on Monday (Jun 25) where it touched on many allegations against former first lady Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor that had succumbed under our society for many years. While former Prime Minister Datuk Sri Najib Razak is facing heavy investigation by the anti-graft body, it looks like the “all hell breaks loose” phenomenon is starting to hunt down Rosmah at a steadier pace as well since Barisan Nasional government was overthrown.
Here’s a look back at all Rosmah’s allegations reported by WSJ where some of us used to take it with a pinch of salt, some laughed at its sheer ridiculousness, some strongly rebutted it, while others were oppressed to tell the truth. The report is based on interviews with people who know Rosmah and Najib as well as researchers. It’s entirely up to you to believe these claims, but considering it coming for WSJ where it was the first international media to break the news about 1MDB scandal and led to speculation that Najib may sue the US financial paper, there could be something bigger playing beneath the surface.
We have summarized the 2,000-word article into 11 points below:
1. Rosmah “Grew Up” In a Palace
According to people who know her, Rosmah was born into a modest family who worked as teachers. However, living a middle-class life wasn’t quite her thing and the sources told WSJ that she felt insecure about opulence, the affluence of her family, growing up.
But with an arrangement got her to live in sultan’s palace, she got to taste the finest things in life as she spent her childhood experiencing the inordinate wealth. Her friends even said Rosmah had dreamed to marry Sultan of Brunei, who is undoubtedly one of the richest people in the world.
2. Rosmah Clings onto Najib because he comes from a political dynasty
The second PM Tun Abdul Razak and the third PM Tun Hussein Onn were Najib’s father and uncle. After Rosmah’s first marriage came to an end, she married Najib when he was serving as chief minister of Pahang in the 1980s.
After a couple of decades, Rosmah saw his husband rose to become the sixth premier and since then she became obsessed with the advantages of power. So much so that she insisted to be treated as the First Lady of Malaysia. She had abused the perks of being a FLOM and used government planes to fly to London, New York, and Los Angeles for reasons we all can tell.
3. She explodes with anger when pressed on her extravagant spending
With her seemingly childhood dream came true, she flaunted her lifestyle resolutely. Some warned her that her spending would leave a noticeable hole in Malaysia’s political account but her imperious demeanor shut off all the challenges.
For example when she moved into a mansion in Kuala Lumpur, some members of the family told her the house was too luxurious even for the first family. She became obnoxious for being challenged with the claim and lashed out her anger at them. The confrontation died off ever since.
Before the height of 2015’s 1MDB investigation where Rosmah already had a damaging reputation, Najib was advised to plan a modest wedding for his daughter but as the story goes, Rosmah snubbed the suggestion and went ahead with a grand wedding ceremony.
The wedding saw Nooryana Najwa married to Daniyar Kessibayev, Nephew of Kazakh president, in March 2015; the ceremony’s flower alone already cost RM3 million. Dr Mahathir then (in 2016) said even the Kings didn’t do weddings as grand as Najib’s family does.
4. You are overthrowing our PM, says Rosmah
As 1MDB investigation intensified in 2015, she urged Najib to declare his assets publicly, claiming that it’s in line with “inherited family assets” but Najib’s four brothers refuted in a statement. The brothers said their father left not much money to the family as the late prime minister was known for his frugality during his tenure.
Upon hearing the statement, Rosmah erupted and deemed the move was overthrowing Najib’s premiership, a family member told WSJ.
5. Rosmah is Najib’s sidekick, or around it
TThis is not an understatement when WSJ reported based on sources saying that Rosmah had a work desk in the Prime Minister’s Office during Najib’s reign. It continued saying that her presence was to aid the less decisive Najib over political matters.
If that’s not enough, when late Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew met with Najib in 2009, Lee invited Rosmah to join the discussion because he learned that Najib and Rosmah worked as a team.
Besides, she also used her status to benefit herself. A local businessman revealed that he gifted Rosmah Hermès Birkin’s handbags because he was depending on Rosmah for annual renewals of his government license. He admitted that some that had been seized by the police a week after the last election were from him. Rosmah also shared a split profit with another businessman where he would buy properties from a state-owned company and convert them into public entity slapped with a higher price tag.
After Najib lost his premiership in GE14, Rosmah’s daughter Azrene Ahmad wrote a lengthy social media post exposing the couple many years of evil doings. Azrene pointed out that Rosmah would consult black magic to attain dominance over others, and often delved into bribery and parallel deals to profit herself − sometimes even without Najib knowing.
6. “Don’t resign, Najib.”
As the saying goes, behind every successful man there is a woman”, it cannot be truer in this case. At the peak of late 2015’s 1MDB investigation, a person close to the family revealed that Najib wanted to resign. However, Rosmah stepped in, used the name of God and prevailed Najib to carry on, specifically saying the 1MDB probe was a “test of Allah.”
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