By Andrew Ong
Former inspector-general of police Musa Hassan has denied a claim that he will hold a press conference in Bangkok on Monday, as posted on the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand (FCCT) website.
According to the FCCT, Musa was ostensibly supposed reveal new details about the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder.
“I do not know anything about this. I did not make such arrangements,” Musa said in a brief telephone conversation with Malaysiakini.
Earlier yesterday afternoon, Malaysiakini was alerted to an notice posted by the FCCT to its members that its headquarters will serve as the venue for Musa's press conference.
According to the notice [view the screencapture at the end of this report], available on the FCCT website, the press conference was to be held at noon, Malaysian time, on Oct 22.
Provocatively titled 'New revelations in the Altantuya murder case', it also includes a disclaimer that the event is not sponsored by the FCCT.
"Responsibility for program content is solely that of the event organiser," reads the invitation, without naming the organiser.
There was one glaring error in the invite, in which the FCCT stated that Musa had quit as the police chief when in fact he had completed his contractual term in September 2010.
Classes on Monday
Musa refused requests to speculate why the FCCT - a reputable organisation that hosted Anwar Ibrahim in February - would send out a notice on a fictitious event.
Sounding very nonchalant about the whole affair, Musa said he was in Kuala Lumpur and he would be holding his teaching classes at Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) as usual tomorrow.
“This is news to me. It is the first time I heard of this,” said Musa, stressing that he did not make any arrangement as suggested by the FCCT notice, which he sighted after being provided the URL.
Attempts tp contact FCCT for details were made yesterday evening, but it is believed that they had already closed for the day.
According to court testimonies, Altantuya, a translator from Mongolia, was slain on Oct 18, 2006 - five weeks after Musa was promoted as the country's top cop.
Eventually, two police personnel - part of then deputy prime minister Najib Abdul Razak's security detail - were found guilty of murdering Altantuya.
Defence analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, who admitted to the court that Altantuya was his lover, was acquitted on a charge of abetting the two police personnel in the murder, without his defence being called.
Najib's text message
On a few occasions, Musa's name would be dragged into the murky details of the murder.
Most prominently, Musa was mentioned during an alleged exchange of text messages between Najib and an Umno-linked lawyer that was made public by the Malaysia Today blog.
A transcript of the text message exchange suggested that Najib had spoken to Musa about the Abdul Razak's involvement in police investigations into the murder.
There was nothing in the transcript to incriminate Musa while Najib has never denied the exchange. Instead, he insisted that "there was no abuse of power".
In May, Musa had told Malaysiakini in an exclusive interview that he had cleared Najib of any connection with the murder.
If the press conference takes place tomorrow, it will be the second surprise sprung by Musa in a week, after withdrawing his suit against Anwar Ibrahim last Tuesday.