KUALA LUMPUR: Umno Youth will counter every accusation against party leaders by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, its chief Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said.
In a statement yesterday, Hishammuddin said Umno had had enough of Anwar's "lies, accusations and nonsense" and would not stand idly by as he slandered party president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and deputy Datuk Seri Najib Razak."Anwar's accusations against our leaders are to divert attention from the new sodomy allegations against him."We will mobilise our members all over Malaysia to meet the public, we will explain and rebut every accusation by Anwar and prove that it is nothing but a bunch of lies."On Thursday, Anwar endorsed a statutory declaration by Razak Baginda's former private investigator, P. Balasubramaniam, linking Najib with murdered Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu.
Yesterday, however, Balasubramaniam retracted his sworn statement, saying that it was made under duress."The withdrawal of the sworn statement proves that it was all just a big lie concocted by Anwar. "It also shows that Anwar is good at playing dirty politics," Hishammuddin said.
Joining Hishammuddin in the attack on Anwar was Putera Umno chairman Datuk Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim, who accused Anwar of attempting to settle his latest sodomy allegations through a trial by media.
"If Anwar is indeed innocent of sodomy then let him prove it in court. He shouldn't shift the spotlight off himself by hurling baseless and hurtful accusations at our national leaders through the media," Abdul Azeez said."I support Perak Mufti Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin's suggestion that we settle this sodomy allegation in an Islamic fashion."Let Anwar and Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan (his accuser) both appear at Masjid Negara, swear on the Quran and tell the truth."