Saturday, July 29, 2006


(see update Aug 04 2006 at bottom)
Later at a separate function at a hotel in Kota Bahru, Dr Mahathir said he believed there are some people who were not keen to let him speak.

“I am disappointed. This is not our style; we
live in a nation where people are non-violent”

The Kelantan Police chief confirmed 4 persons have been arrested in conjunction with the attack on Tun Dr Mahathir at 7.30 pm. The four are being held at the Kelantan Contingent police Headquarters to facilitate police investigation into the case.

There were conflicting reports in the 11.00 am incident just after arriving at the Sultan Petra Ismail Airport in Kelanta.n

It seems all the earlier reports on the internet were not so accurate. The spraying happened within a few seconds and "eye witness" accounts can be misleading as no one is that observant compared to a video recording, which can provide the split images to show that exact moment.

An example from Malaysiakini (which was updated)

He was then escorted by several men in jackets to a waiting Mitsubishi Pajero arranged by former Kelantan Umno strongman Ibrahim Ali. It was at this point when Mahathir and Ibrahim Ali were sprayed with mace.”

The former premier was apparently about to give a speech”

The STAR was also faulty;

"incident took place just as Dr Mahathir was entering a 4WD vehicle together with Ibrahim"

Another one….

“The former PM was about to alight from his car when the attack took place minutes ago. He fainted and was sent back to his hotel”.

And Malaysia Today

“When Mahathir arrived he was ushered into Datuk Ibrahim Ali’s Pajero. Datuk Nik Safia then sprayed mace into the Pajero and grabbed the shocked Mahathir and bundled him into his (Datuk Nik Safia) own car and zoomed off.”

Even the Deputy IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan’s version as dished out by Bernama is not exactly what happened.

“He said while they were accompanying Dr Mahathir to the awaiting car, there was a slight argument between the two groups to usher him to the car belonging to Ibrahim's group. Each group tried to usher Dr Mahathir to their car.

"At that time, a man was spraying some form of substance at Datuk Ibrahim Ali's face and accidentally sprayed on Tun Dr Mahathir's face and his aide's," said Musa.

the NST give a more accurate report of what happened as evidenced by the following sequence 1-4 of photos and the one below them

1 - Dr Mahathir was already inside the "open air" 4-wheel drive vehicle holding the Megaphone (with his Right hand) ready for his speech, image from video.
Picture Below : Immediately after the attack, he was holding his breath with his left hand

2 - Still holding the Megaphone, he was grimacing in irritation and pain when out of the car
3 & 4 With the spectacles off and in discomfort he was lead away by aides
(see Dr Mahathir own words (at the end) to confirm this situation at the time of attack; even the deputy IGP was misled)

The moment immediately after the attack

The NST account

Former PM Dr Mahathir sprayed with pepper ;28 Jul 2006
Sulaiman Jaafar and Sharifah Mahsinah


Former Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, had to abandon his plan to address the crowd on arrival at the Sultan Ismail Petra airport here today after he was attacked with a chemical, believed to be pepper spray.

Dr Mahathir, who is on a one-day visit here, was standing through the sunroof of a four-wheel drive vehicle and about to start his speech when an unidentified man sprayed the chemical.

The former Prime Minister, who was seen coughing, was then taken away by organisers to a car and whisked to his hotel. The attacker escaped in the crowd.

Several other people, including the Kelantan People's Action Council (MTRK) president Datuk Ibrahim Ali, one of the organisers of the visit, were also hit by the spray.

Earlier, a crowd of about 1,000 greeted Dr Mahathir who arrived on a private jet about

On arrival in a private jet, he was mobbed
by the crowd present - sourrounding him

Dr Mahathir told reporters at his hotel later that it was his first experience and he felt pain in his eyes, nose and throat.

"I know there are plans to stop me from speaking but to do this, I think is a sign of desperation. I will continue to speak, I don't give up so easily," he said.

Dr Mahathir said he did not want to point fingers but the fact is that those involved do not have to resort to such action to stop him.

He reiterated that he is an Umno man and support Umno strongly and is not on the other side of the fence.

Above: The Malaysiakini Headline

'I was PM for the country, not my family' Jul 28, 06 5:06pm

Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad was approached by reporters while having lunch at the Renaissance Hotel in Kota Bahru, Kelantan.

Responding to questions, Mahathir said he will not be deterred by the attack on him this morning. He added that 'desperate people' were responsible for the incident.

The former premier also continued his criticism against the current administration.

* Have you experienced something like this (the attack) before?
r: Never. First time experience [...] Itulah orang desperate (These are desperate people). Tak mau dengar apa yang saya cakap (They don't want to hear what I have to say)

* Were you shocked?
Well I have never experienced this before. I knew there were some plans to prevent me from speaking. I'm not allowed to speak to Umno people at all [...] But this I think is a sense of desperation. They have a lot to hide. That is why they don't want to hear.

If there is nothing to hide, they can always explain. But it is clear they are desperate enough to use physical means.

* Will you continue...
They have a lot to hide. They don't want people to speak; they don't want people to listen. I will continue. I don't give up easily.

* Is this the work of 'government people'?
I don't know who, but whoever did it, tried to prevent me from talking. May be it's those people I have been accusing.

* These people were responsible for what happened earlier?
We cannot say who was responsible, but the bottom line is, even if you want to stop me, this is not the way. We are not a violent country. If they don't want to listen, then don't listen. If they want to put up banners, go ahead.

* On Umno?
I'm an Umno man. I support Umno strongly. But today, the leadership is what is wrong. One must remember that Umno had got rid of leaders who somehow did not adhere to Umno's principles...Dato Onn (Jaffar), Tunku Abdul Rahman, they did great service, then they do something that is against Umno's struggle.

* Do you feel unappreciated?

[...] It's ok if they don't appreciate me but don't do things that will ruin Umno, the people and the country [...]

* There are those who accuse you of destroying the unity in Umno
Unity in Umno has a specific direction, the direction is to champion the party's ambitions. In Umno, it is normal for leaders to have differences. I was challenged by Tengku Razaleigh (Hamzah). I was challenged by Anwar (Ibrahim), of course Umno breaks up but in the end, Umno will reunite to fight for the Malays, the Muslims and the nation. I am worried if Umno is united for something bad, that I will oppose, unite for something good.

* You said Umno members must speak at the proper forum but now you speak outside the party
I am not talking outside of the party, I want to talk inside the party, but they don't allow me to do so.

* If Umno gives you a chance to talk, will you change your approach?
Give me a chance to talk, but this does not mean I cannot talk to others. Tengku Razaleigh was free to campaign here and there then. For me it was nothing. Anwar also campaigned outside of Umno.

* Are there evidence that the prime minister gave contracts to his family
There are evidence in the newspapers. For example Scomi (owned by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's son Kamaluddin) gets contracts. ECM-Libra (linked to Abdullah's son-in-law Khairy Jamaluddin). The finance minister (Abdullah) should not give things to his son-in-law. I was the prime minister for the country not for my family.

from Bernama

Immediate Arrest Order On 'Spray' Culprit ; July 28, 2006 19:13 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, July 28 (Bernama) -- Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan said he had ordered an immediate arrest of the culprit who sprayed a form of substance at Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in Kota Baharu Friday.

He in their investigation, police had identified the man who had sprayed at the former prime minister who arrived at the
Sultan Ismail Petra Airport Friday morning for a one-day visit to Kelantan.

In a statement, Musa said the incident happened following an argument between two groups which organised two events to welcome Dr Mahathir to the state, one led by former Pasir Mas MP Datuk Ibrahim Ali and another by former Kuala Krai Umno deputy chairman Datuk Nik Sapeia Nik Yusoff.

He said while they were accompanying Dr Mahathir to the awaiting car, there was a slight argument between the two groups to usher him to the car belonging to Ibrahim's group.

"Each group tried to usher Dr Mahathir to their car.

"At that time, a man was spraying some form of substance at Datuk Ibrahim Ali's face and accidentally sprayed on Tun Dr Mahathir's face and his aide's," said Musa.

He said Dr Mahathir was later ushered by his aide to another car to take him to his hotel.

Musa also denied reports on the Internet that Ibrahim's eyes had been sprayed by men in jackets believed to be from the police special operations force.

He described reports on the net as defaming the police and the government.

Musa warned that the police would take stern action against anyone who spread lies on the Internet and the mass media.

Update by The Star Newsdesk

KOTA BARU: A man sprayed Mace at Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad moments after the former Prime Minister arrived at the airport here Friday morning.

In Putrajaya, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he was angry over the incident and ordered the police to conduct an immediate investigation and to take stern action against those responsible for the act.

According to police, former Umno strongman Datuk Ibrahim Ali took the brunt of the spray on his face while Dr Mahathir and his bodyguard were also affected.

The 11am (0300GMT) incident took place just as Dr Mahathir was entering a 4WD vehicle together with Ibrahim.

Dr Mahathir, who was seen taking off his glasses and wiping his eyes, was rushed from the vehicle by his other security personnel to a car nearby, which then drove away.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan told The Star that his officers have identified the man who sprayed the mace and expect to make an arrest soon.

Musa said the police were investigating the incident under Section 328 of the Penal Code.

The section reads: "Whoever administer to or causes to be taken by any person any poison or any stupefying intoxication or unwholesome drug or other things with intent to cause hurt to such person or with intent to commit or facilitate the commission of an offence or knowing it to be likely that he will thereby cause hurt shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years and shall also liable to fine"

Later at a press conference, Dr Mahathir described the attack as an attempt to stop him from speaking out.

Describing how he felt, Dr Mahathir said: “It felt something like a sore throat, my eys were stinging, I could not see clearly and removed my glasses.”

The former premier said he would continue with his scheduled talks Friday.

Dr Mahathir was on a one-day visit to Kelantan and was scheduled to attend a dialogue and dinner organised by the Kelantan People’s Action Council headed by Datuk Paduka Ibrahim Ali.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he was angry over the incident and ordered the police to conduct an immediate investigation and to take stern action against those responsible for the act.

"I regret and am very angry such an incident has happened," he said, adding that those responsible for the incident should be severely punished.

He said the matter should be immediately resolved to avoid negative implications and misconception among the public.

The Prime Minister also feared that certain quarters would take advantage of the incident by disseminating rumours, especially through the Internet.


Update: Jul 29; 21.30

A 53 year old businessman with the title of Dauk believed to have spray a from of substance from a canister on Tun Dr Mahathir at the airport yesterday has been remanded for three days. The remand order by the Magistrate’s court in Kota Bahru will be to further investigation. The case is being investigated under Section 328 of the Penal Code which carries a maximum jail sentence of up to 10 years and fine.

Meanwhile the Kelantan Police Chief, Datuk Zulkifli Abdullah said that the businessman was arrested at his house in Pasir Tembu at about
10.00 pm last night by a police party.

He added that so far the police have taken statements from 27 witnesses including 7 members of the 8th Brigade Army here who were commissioned by one of the organizer for the event attended by Dr Mahathir. All witnesses who have given statements to the police will undergo the process of identifying the suspect.

The police would probe the case from various angles to determine the motive of the incident including the scuffle between rival groups to determine the right to escort Tun Mahathir to his destination.

Meanwhile PM Datuk Seri Abdullah said that any UMNO member found to be involved in the spraying incident will be subjected to party discipline. This party action will be apart from the legal action against them

This is an offence and if he is an UMNO member this incident will come under disciplinary regulations of the party. All positions held must be surrendered and the person may be expelled from the party.

He was also asked whether the move by Padang Besar division in Perlis, which was reported to be inviting Dr Mahathir to officiate its divisional meeting on Aug 26, would be in breach of party rules.

Only Supreme Council members, menteris besar, cabinet ministers from Umno and divisional heads are allowed to officiate divisional meetings on a non-election year.

Abdullah said: "If this is the regulation, then it should be abided. That has been explained by Datuk Seri Radzi Sheikh Ahmad as Umno Secretary General. If that is the decision, how could we give an exception to any party. I think it is only logical enough."

Abdullah said rules which had been in existence for a long time, must be complied with by all Umno divisions. He said Umno leaders should take advantage of divisional meetings to explain various issues to party members.

This includes making the Ninth Malaysia Plan's implementation a mission for all levels of society as the nation moves ahead towards achieving Vision 2020.

"All these must be understood and this is the opportunity available for party members to use the limited time for Umno to hold divisional meetings, and listen to explanations by their leaders," said Abdullah. -- BERNAMA

Update 2: Jul 30, 1am

as explained by Dr Mahathir on actually how it happend- the spraying and it confirms the earlier internet stories as incorrect
Mahathir Says Incident In Kelantan Scary ;July 29, 2006 18:38 PM

LANGKAWI, July 29 (Bernama) -- Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad Saturday described the incident in which he was hit by pepper spray in Kelantan Friday as very scary.

It was frightening because he had difficulty breathing, could not speak and his throat felt painful while his eyes, nose and lips were smarting, he told reporters after visiting several development projects here.

He said that according to the schedule arranged for his arrival at the airport in Kota Baharu, he would speak from the sunroof of a Pajero vehicle to thank those who received him and then change to another vehicle.

"As I was entering the Pajero, a sturdy man pulled me roughly and with force to stop me from entering the Pajero but I went in anyway. Then, when I stood up to speak, the spray hit me.

"I thought initially it was police tear gas but this was colourless unlike tear gas," he said.

A 53-year-old businessman with the title of "Datuk" was arrested last night over the incident.

Dr Mahathir said he believed the spray was a type commonly used by women to protect themselves against sexual attackers and it was easily available in the market.

He said he would cooperate fully with the police in their investigation, adding the incident was an effort to prevent him from speaking at gatherings scheduled during his one-day visit to Kelantan.

Update Jul 31 18:45
July 31, 2006 18:41

Datuk warded in Hospital on Sunday
Remand On spraying Datuk Extended Till Tuesday; July 31 2006 18.41

KOTA BAHARU, July 31 (Bernama) -- The police were granted a 24-hour extension to remand a "Datuk" to assist in investigations into the spraying of tear gas on former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Friday.

Magistrate Mohd Nazri Ismail granted the extension at the Raja Perempuan Zainab II Hospital at about 1pm Monday.

Kelantan Police Chief Datuk Zulkifli Abdullah said police needed the extension to complete the investigation report on the incident.

"The three-day remand order obtained on Saturday ends Monday but we still need some time before we can submit the investigation papers to the deputy public prosecutor for prosecution," he told Bernama.

The "Datuk, also an Umno member, was admitted to the hospital after he complained that he was unwell Sunday morning. The police arrested him at his house in Pasir Tumboh, near here, at about 10pm on Friday.

Update Aug01 06; 10.00 am
Ibrahim Ali's version of the attack via Malaysiakini

Spray attack aimed at 'silencing' Dr M Jul 31, 06 6:31pm

Former Kelantan Umno strongman Ibrahim Ali claimed that Friday's 'spray attack' was aimed at preventing former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad from addressing the crowd at the Sultan Ismail Petra airport.

Speaking at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today to clarify the incident, Ibrahim denied reports that he was the target of the attack.

He said if the assailant had intended to attack him, the person would not have waited until both Mahathir and him entered a waiting four-wheel drive vehicle.

In view of this, he concluded that the spray attack was aimed at stopping Mahathir from thanking the crowd for his reception through the sunroof of the vehicle.

'It was sabotage'
Recalling the incident, Ibrahim said suddenly several hands were stuck through the vehicle's window and then he heard the sound of spraying similar to that of an aerosol can.

Following this, Mahathir dropped the loud-hailer on Ibrahim, who was suffering from severe chest pains, followed by coughing and eye irritation.

"I thought I was having a heart attack," exclaimed Ibrahim, adding that he was semi-conscious when dragged out of the four-wheel drive.

The former deputy minister said he was oblivious that Mahathir had been dragged away immediately after the attack in a black car allegedly arranged by former Kuala Krai Umno leader Nik Sapeia Nik Yusoff.

"(The attack) was meant to either sabotage or delay the (Mahathir) events," he said in response to a question.

He also accused Nik Sapeia of attempting to delay the events by various means, but stopped short of holding him responsible for the spray attack.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that the police have extended the remand of a 'Datuk' who was arrested in connection with the incident till tomorrow.

The unknown 'Datuk' - who is believed to be a former Kelantan Umno leader - is presently undergoing treatment at a hospital in Kota Bharu.

Men in black

In a related development, Ibrahim said a powerful third-party may have hired the seven soldiers to act as Mahathir's bodyguards during his visit to Kelantan.

"They were big sized [...] wearing black jackets. I thought they were officers from the police department, but I couldn't be bothered (then)," he said, adding that he was busy making preparations for Mahathir's reception at the time.

Ibrahim, who co-organised the event, said the men in jackets descended from several black cars parked right next to his convoy of vehicles meant to take Mahathir to a hotel from the Sultan Ismail Petra airport.

According to Kelantan police chief Zulkifli Abdullah, the seven were questioned by the police and it was confirmed that they were hired for the event.

The New Straits Times reported today that acting Eighth Brigade commander Lt Kol Norizan Ahmad said the seven soldiers had abeen placed under camp detention pending investigation.

UPDATE Aug 01 06, 19.00 hrs

The Datuk arrested in conjunction with the chemical spraying incident on Tun Dr Mahathir has been released on bail pending "a decision the Deputy Public Prosecutor". His Passport however has been seized to prevent him from leaving the countryand here is the official ACCOUNT From Bernama:

Left: The Datuk smiling and waving to supporters:
Right: Making the 100 m dash to his waiting car. Inserts: Images at the time of arrest

NB His lawyer later clarified that the Datuk was not on bail but released with NO Conditon

August 01, 2006 18:49 PM

Businessman In Pepper Spray Incident Released On Bail

KOTA BAHARU, Aug 1 (Bernama) -- A businessman who was detained for investigation into the pepper spray incident on former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad last Friday, was released on police bail Tuesday.

Magistrate Nazri Ismail, sitting in chambers, issued the order after the 53-year-old Datuk, was brought to the Magistrate's Court about 1 pm Tuesday.

Police also obtained an order to impound the businessman's passport.

The businessman was admitted to the Raja Perempuan Zainab II Hospital Monday when he complained of being unwell and was discharged at 11.30am today and was then taken to the Kota Baharu police station before being taken to court.

Acting Kelantan CID chief Supt Shafie Ismail, when contacted, confirmed the businessman's release.

He also confirmed that a police report was lodged by the businessman against Kelantan People's Action Council (MTRK) chairman Datuk Paduka Ibrahim Ali.

In the report, which was lodged at 12.30pm Tuesday, the businessman wanted the police to investigate accusations made by Ibrahim against him.

In last Friday's incident, Dr Mahathir was forced to cancel his speech to a crowd who had waited for his arrival at the Sultan Ismail Petra Airport when someone sprayed pepper on his face.

UPDATE: Aug 04 2006 14.10pm

Pepper spray incident sparks a new debate; 04 Aug 2006
KOTA BARU: The pepper spray incident here last Friday has taken on a life of its own.

It has now opened a debate
on who was responsible for former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s transportation arrangements when he arrived at the airport here.

This was the issue which led to a dispute between two groups, resulting in Dr Mahathir getting a dose of the pepper spray.

Businessman Datuk Nik Sapeia Nik Yusof, who was arrested in connection with the incident, said yesterday that it was his job to arrange for Dr Mahathir’s transportation from the Sultan Ismail Petra Airport to the Renaissance Hotel here.

Nik Sapeia, who was freed from police custody on Tuesday,
denied suggestions that he was at the airport to hijack Dr Mahathir’s visit to Kelantan.

The 53-year-old former Umno division leader’s claims contradicted previous statements by the event organisers such as Datuk Ibrahim Ali, who said Nik Sapeia was not part of the planning committee.

Nik Sapeia said:

"It was a verbal agreement between me and one of the organisers, (Tan Sri) Abdullah Ahmad.

"I was supposed to provide the transport from the airport to the Renaissance, Abdullah was to handle transportation from the Renaissance,
while Ibrahim was only supposed to greet Dr Mahathir," he said.

He was speaking to reporters at his house in Pasir Tumboh after announcing a RM10,000 donation to the New Straits Times Press (M) Berhad Lebanon Fund.

It was reported that a scuffle broke out between the supporters
of two groups, one aligned to Nik Sapeia and the other to Ibrahim, when Dr Mahathir arrived at the airport.

They were fighting for the right to pick up Dr Mahathir.

Just as Dr Mahathir was ushered into a four-wheel drive with Ibrahim, a man pepper sprayed the latter and accidentally hit the former prime minister.

Ibrahim yesterday reiterated that Nik Sapeia was not part of the organising committee.

"He just showed up at the airport with some black-jacketed men, and started acting like Dr Mahathir was in Kelantan for his own programme."

Nik Sapeia countered:

"I do not want to comment other than to say that everyone in
Malaysia knows who Ibrahim Ali is."

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