We are more than happy to acknowledge that this was ‘his story’, since there was no money or award waiting for Sarawak Report in exposing it. Hussein Hamid had approached this blog for help in broadcasting the matter more widely and effectively, given the amateur nature of his own operation, which he readily admitted to.
However, unfortunately, Mr Hussein Hamid and his source were also hoping for money and were trying to employ Sarawak Report to help them to find a buyer for their material. They wanted US$5 million.
This blog did attempt to find them a reasonable sum (a fraction of the amount) to enable the source to achieve safe-passage for performing his civic duty. However, this was not the primary purpose for Hamid and his source. They made it clear that, much as they wanted to expose grand corruption by Najib, their pockets came before their country. After eight months with them failing to persuade anyone to pay their ransom (of course they failed to obtain such a ludicrous and greedy sum) Sarawak Report first warned them and then published the story.
We did so after Hussein Hamid had angrily responded that if there was no money forthcoming there would be no expose of the grand wrong-doing. Ever.
Sarawak Report is sorry that its efforts to persuade this blogger and his source to put good sense and probity and the benefit to his own countrymen (who are being stolen from by the billion) before personal gain, but it was not to be.
We had taken the precaution of obtaining as many of the documents as possible should this turn out to be the case, because of course this is a matter of major public interest and should therefore be exposed.
We leave readers to decide whether Mr Hussein Hamid or Sarawak Report has the moral highground on this matter. However, Hussein Hamid is correct when he says he failed to get any promises in writing that we would abide by his demand of silence, unless he got the money, because there were no promises.
Sarawak Report always intended to get this story out, from the day that it was volunteered by Mr Hussein Hamid that he was aware that Najib Razak had mounted a special operation to target a number of the funds under the control of his Ministry of Finance to siphon out vast sums of cash for his own political purposes and doubtless personal use.
This should surprise no one, since this kleptocrat has already been caught red-handed over 1MDB.
What is important in Hussein Hamid’s angry outbust is that he has validated a story that numerous agencies in Malaysia have been doing their best to stifle and dismiss as “fake news’, a ‘hoax’, ‘forgery’ and the like. As far as this blogger and his source were concerned this was a US$5 million dollar explosive story and the fact of the matter is that they have even more information and documentation to prove it than Sarawak Report has so far produced.
Najib and BN are desperate to keep a lid on this matter and to impose a blanket of silence on the attempts to thieve from EPF, FELDA, FELCRA, KWAP and other agencies in the run up to the GE 14. They don’t want people to put two and two together when they are handed out their RM50 notes over the coming weeks and realise that this was the money that came back to Malaysia from public bonds that have been utilised as collateral to raise billions from various banks.
So, at least this blogger is now strongly placed to elevate himself from what most might regard as a sadly selfish and immoral position on this story to a respected champion of reform once more. He should quit cavilling about being paid money and come out with the rest of the facts.
Sarawak Report does not apologise for taking the position that it has.