KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 29 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today he expects the opposition to criticise him on his suggestion that Permata be given the job to help efforts to set up more childcare centres since it involves his wife.
Speaking at a seminar here, the prime minister suggested that Permata, which his wife Datin Seri Paduka Rosmah Mansor is the patron, co-operate with the National Council of Women’s Organisations (NCWO) to set up more childcare centres in light of increased female participation in the workforce.
“Forget (the fact that it’s my) wife that’s involved. Work with Permata as it is a programme that is committed to early education.
“But we know the opposition would belittle the idea if Permata is involved. The opposition, they are not constructive. They only know how to belittle everything,” the prime minister said in his speech at the “Women as the Nation’s Transformation Drive” seminar.
Rosmah had been implicated in several graft allegations by the opposition including her alleged involvement in the murder of Mongolian Altantuya Shaariibuu which she has vehemently denied.
The prime minister’s wife had also been accused of amassing wealth and was recently forced to deny purchasing a RM24 million diamond ring.
The accusation first surfaced in 2011 when PKR central committee member Badrul Hisham Shaharin claimed he had received information that a ring tagged at RM24,458,400 was flown into Kuala Lumpur with Rosmah being the receiver.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz clarified later that although the ring was brought into the country, it was not sold and was eventually returned to the company which owns it.
Rosmah also claimed that she had become the number one target of the opposition, despite not being a politician.
Najib, in defence of his wife, had said the opposition was “running out of ideas” to attack his administration and had resorted to personal attacks by making Rosmah the target.
The prime minister in his speech today urged voters not to be swayed by opposition rhetoric, reiterating that the opposition is disinterested in playing a constructive role by pointing out the attacks on his recent trip to Gaza, Palestine.
“Even my Gaza trip was belittled. They are not constructive,” Najib charged.