KUALA LUMPUR: The man at the centre of the sexual assault allegations against Anwar Ibrahim said he knew what he was up against some three months before his shocking police report against the PKR leader late last year.
Muhammed Yusoff Rawther recalls an incident that took place at the Seapark police station in Petaling Jaya, when he was giving his statement over his police report against Anwar’s political secretary, Farhash Wafa Salvador Rizal Mubarak, in September last year.
He said since that appointment with police, his complaint against Farhash, whom he accused of physically attacking him, has not seen any update from the police or from the Attorney-General’s Chambers.
“So I am under no illusion that my complaint against Farhash’s boss would also be acted upon,” Yusoff told FMT.
“I was physically assaulted, beaten and hurt by Farhash, a flunkey to Anwar,” he said, visibly upset about the incident, but more so over the silence from the authorities.
“It has been eight months since my police report. I was terribly injured, rendering my right arm weak and hurting. I required surgery, and the authorities have failed to take any action against my assailant, someone who I have clearly identified,” he said.
Yusoff vividly recalled the incident, which took place on May 16, 2019, just a day before the death of his grandfather, prominent Penang consumer advocate SM Mohamed Idris.
He was at that time part of Anwar’s team in the latter’s private office, a sprawling bungalow in the leafy neighbourhood of Bukit Gasing, Petaling Jaya.
Asked why Farhash assaulted him, Yusoff replied: “What do you call someone who randomly barges into my workspace and screams and shouts and when ignored, attacks?”
He said he immediately informed Anwar about the assault, who told him “to keep it to myself”.
A medical report from Pantai Hospital which he showed to FMT stated that he had injuries and a tear to his shoulder, which required a surgery that would cost RM40,000.
Yusoff said Anwar had earlier promised to foot the medical bill.
“After Anwar failed to keep to his word, even after having met me at my grandfather’s funeral a day later (May 17), I lodged a police report against Farhash on May 26 at the Petaling Jaya police headquarters.”
Yusoff said Anwar was not pleased.
“That’s not a right decision,” he recalled Anwar telling him.
In the next four months, there was no update from the police.
“I did not hear from the investigating officer, and every time I called him to ask about the status of the investigation, he always avoided answering by saying it’s still pending.”
It was then that he decided to file a civil suit against Farhash, seeking compensation for assault, as well as against Anwar’s press secretary, Tunku Nashrul Tunku Abaidah, for comments suggesting that he had disciplinary and drug-related problems.
Angry ‘Special Branch officer’
What transpired in the wake of the civil suits convinced Yusoff of a weapon he lacked: political connections.
But he said the news of the civil action by him probably broke the four-month silence from the police, who asked him to come to give his statement on Sept 24.
“Despite feeling uneasy, I nevertheless kept to the agreed time and met the investigation officer,” he said.
It was while his statement was being taken at the Seapark police station that Yusoff said a Special Branch officer barged into the room and grabbed his file from the investigating officer, before asking: “Siapa suruh hang buat saman sivil, kan polis dok siasat?” (Who asked you to file a civil suit, aren’t the police already investigating?).
“He then left the room and I overheard him on the phone saying, ‘Jap, dia baru sampai, tengah tengok fail dia sekarang’ (Wait, he just arrived, seeing his files now),” he said.
Yusoff said he has details of the man’s identity.
“I will divulge the details in court or if requested by the authorities,” he said.
Yusoff said he was still waiting for answers over the decision by the Attorney-General’s Chambers not to bring criminal charges against Anwar over his sexual assault report.
But he said it was more baffling that his report against Farhash “has been met with silence” despite evidence that included a medical report.
“It seems to me that this could only have been achieved if there was interference from certain individuals, likely from the political circle,” he said, without naming who he meant.
Farhash has rejected the assault claims by Yusoff, and last week, filed a defamation suit against him. This was some two weeks after the AGC said there was no case against Anwar, citing “contradictions of material facts” and “insufficient evidence” in Yusoff’s claims of sexual assault.
Yusoff’s police report against Anwar in early December triggered a probe by Bukit Aman police under Section 354 of the Penal Code, which deals with using criminal force to outrage a person’s modesty.
Yusoff has since said he would not give up on seeking justice in both cases involving Anwar and Farhash.
“I urge the police and the AGC to come clean on the investigations, if there was any form of interference and to explain why an assailant has yet to be brought to justice.
“Am I to continue to suffer because I don’t have political connections?” he asked.
FMT is contacting Anwar and Farhash, as well as the AGC and police, for their response.