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PAS information chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar and Sirul Azhar Umar's mother, Piah Ahmad at the arrival hall in Kuala Lumpur International Airport this morning. — TRP pic by Sukhbir Cheema
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Talks are under way between PAS information chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar and the Australian government to grant Sirul Azhar Umar, the convicted murderer of Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu, permanent Australian citizenship.
The Pokok Sena member of Parliament claimed that the former police commando was a duty bound personnel who had high level of patriotism, love for the country along with his job and should be allowed to start a new life following the events that led him to leave Malaysia to Australia to seek asylum.
“Sirul was a personnel who was ready to carry out any orders given to him by the authorities.”
Mahfuz said this to reporters after touching down at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) together with Sirul’s 74-year-old mother, Piah Ahmad.
Last Sunday, Mahfuz had led the group of seven which included Sirul’s sister Noriatin Umar and a lawyer, on what he called a five-day “humanitarian mission” to the Villawood detention centre in Sydney where Sirul is currently in the custody of the country’s immigration authorities.
Refusing to divulge on the details of the meeting which took place four times — with each session lasting about two hours between mother and son — Mahfuz stressed that due to Sirul’s loyalty and honesty, he was not appreciated by certain quarters.
“I hope he can remain in Australia to start a new life.”
When questioned if Sirul would be revealing the perpetrator who had ordered the killing of the Mongolian model to the Malaysian media, Mahfuz said only time will tell.
“Give him time as he has already promised to redeem his and his family’s dignity. When the time is right, he will speak.”
When asked whether both PKR and Pas would work together to get Sirul to speak to the Malaysian media, Mahfuz said he saw no issue for PKR to do it separately.
“I was the first to contact him and my mission is solely humanitarian. They (PKR) are welcome to do the same. I’m just an ardent listener.”
He also supported PKR’s online campaign, demanding the police reopen the investigation papers.
On whether his trip was a character assassination attempt on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s image, Mahfuz declined to comment.
“It is up to them, I don’t want to comment on what they claim. I funded the trip myself.” he said, declining to reveal the cost.
“I was there to dismantle the clutter especially among Malaysians and internationals on this issue.”
Mahfuz said Sirul had served as a bodyguard to not only Najib, but to former prime minister’s Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and incarcerated Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim when the latter was a deputy prime minister.
“In fact, Sirul was also part of the team which arrested Anwar in his residence during the the Sodomy I trial in 1998.”
“He had no mask on when he assisted in arresting Anwar. Such was his loyalty and dedication to his duty.”
Piah, on the other hand said she may visit Sirul again provided her health is good.
She did not divulge much on the conversations with Sirul, who was said to have left Malaysia for Australia prior to the Federal Court finding him and former Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri guilty of murdering the Mongolian model.
The guilty verdict then led to an arrest warrant being issued for Sirul Azhar.