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Two issues that make a controversy in the ‘Lead by Example’ award from the Antiquities Coalition for our Permata National program that doubted its funding with dubious financial resources and the second is the intervention of foreign media. Permata is linked to PM Najib Razak’s wife, Rosmah Mansor who is the founder and this organisation is government agency based in the Prime Minister Department.

The controversial withdrawal of this award is easily to catch out its erroneous intentions when Professor Tudor Parfitt, the chair of the international academic advisory panel for the event himself admitted that the decision is based on media resources. Should the committee’s recommendations is right or wrong, Parfitt himself depended solely on media resources and not on any other reliable informations such as the Malaysia government themselves.

Thus, Parfitt credibility to chair for such a prominent international academic advisory is doubted when he seems to be reckless in his decision and his easy way out is to put the blame on his committee’s recommendations. The media interventions namely the WSJ and NYT are their references but if Parfitt is to be a fair and just chief, each and every article from these medias ought to be scrutinized and verified.

For all we know, these media bullies are well known for their ficticious and speculative stories that their sources are merely based on anonymities and hearsays. Malaysia government has repeatedly demanded to name their sources but to prove themselves as unscrupulous medias, WSJ and NYT kept producing articles to discredit PM Najib Razak and his leadership.

Should the funding for Permata is questionable, there is no reason why Parfitt should failed to obtain answers from Malaysian government. Therefore Parfitt owes Malaysians an explanation for discrediting our Prime Minister’s wife and be responsible to fix this humiliation.

Infact, as we read UNESCO’s official statement from its Director General Irina Bokova, they are just the co-host and her presence is only to witness the award presentation on 22 September. It is very unlikely for UNESCO to be relying on hearsays and unreliable media reportings. Due to an oversight and heedless act by Parfitt and his commitee members from Antiquities Coalition, not only PM Najib’s wife is tainted but Irina and UNESCO are aslo implicated.

Good news for the nation will always be bad news for the oppositions and vice versa. Therefore, with such reporting from Bernama on PM Najib’s wife and widely published by the anti-establishment from local and foreign medias, it is a clear political motivated attempt while national interests are thus eliminated.

As confirmed by PM Najib’s Press Secretary Tengku Sariffuddin Ahmad in his statement, such political resistance would not adversely affecting the viability of the national project to provide opportunities to Malaysia’s brilliant children. Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor has also declined the deferred award from Antiquities Coalition and this is not only wise but also proves that Datin Seri has placed her priority on the objectives of Permata before any personal glory.

It is even more embarassing for Antiquities Coalition to be linked to UNESCO and Malaysians are told that their award are neither applied or lobbied by Malaysia Government. Infact, we Malaysians are puzzled when an organisation meant to combat against heritage destruction worldwide would be interested to divert their main objective to the future of Malaysian’s children.

None of their receipients are involved in any children’s future well being such as Sara Bloomfield, the director of the United States Holocaust Memorial, Esther Coopersmith, Unesco Goodwill Ambassador, Meera Gandhi, the founder and CEO of the Giving Back Foundation, Francine Lefrak from the Harvard Women’s Leadership Board, Deborah Lehr, the chair of the Antiquities Coalition and Catherine Reynolds, the Founder and CEO of the Catherine Reynolds Foundation.

Therefore, why is the sudden diversion for children’s development interests by Antiquities Coalition when earlier included Permata’s founder as one of the recipient and later dismissed her for media hearsays accussations, if it is not meant to delibrately discredit PM Najib’s leadership? Even so, their
award theme, ‘A Tribute to Heroes in the Global Campaign Against Violent Extremism’, is not even relevant to Permata’s objective to early childhood education and care.

When malicioius plot is uncovered, it is not Malaysians that felt the pinch but prominent organisation such as UNESCO and its allies will be discredited and likely to be unreliable and untrustworthy worldwide. They should take heed of this controversy and by allowing wild and baseless accusations to be dominated in their organisaton, they are inviting the world to lose confidence in them.

This prominent international body should never interfere with any states affair as they should uphold the nation’s interest first and not involved in its power tussle. As Malaysians, we condemn anyone worldwide even if it is UNESCO or its related organization for any attempts to interfere in our affairs and may it be a stern reminder that Malaysians cannot be fooled as we are as alert as a bird in springtime.




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