After no-show, Sirul returns call to thank media for coverage

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KUALA LUMPUR: After a much-awaited teleconference with convicted killer Sirul Azhar Umar was cancelled because of his no-show, Sirul called back two hours later to thank the Malaysian media, promising to keep them updated “from time to time”.

He said this in a three-minute conversation with PAS information chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar, who received the phone call from Sirul hours after the scheduled teleconference was due to be held yesterday.

Sirul, who was convicted of killing Mongolian interpreter Altantuya Shaariibuu, said he was comfortable and “secure” in the Villawood Immigration detention centre, Sydney, where he was being held.

“I won’t say much but I want to thank the Malaysian media for their coverage and also the government of Australia for its protection and for giving me a comfortable and secure environment,” he said in the brief phone call.

“I will try keep you all updated from time to time.”

Mahfuz told The Malaysian Insider that Sirul said he would have to adhere to the rules of the detention centre in Australia and had no plans to reveal more than what he had already told Malaysiakini.

He added that Sirul would only say more on the matter at another time in the future.

Earlier, Sirul, a former police commando, failed to respond to calls by Mahfuz for the teleconference which was organised by PAS.

Mahfuz said he had tried contacting Sirul several times over the phone for about 45 minutes yesterday but to no avail. He then apologised to the press that had been waiting since 11am to talk to Sirul, who agreed to speak to the Malaysian media last week after saying that he was considering to “tell all” about Altantuya’s murder.

“We just planned it but it did not work out,” he told reporters.

Last week, Sirul told Malaysiakini that he had taken orders to commit the murder together with Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri.

Media members filled the PAS headquarters yesterday in hopes of getting further clarification from Sirul. — The Malaysian Insider


This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on February 24, 2015.