KUALA LUMPUR - Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan admitted in court yesterday that he could have escaped from the alleged sodomy attack but he did not.
During cross-examination, counsel Karpal Singh pointed out to Saiful that he could have lodged a police report, screamed or sought help from the guardhouse before the alleged attack. "Did you do any of those?" Karpal asked Saiful.
Questioning then went back to the day Saiful met then deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the latter's house.
In his testimony earlier, Saiful said he went to meet Najib on June 24, 2008 -- two days before he was allegedly sodomised by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Karpal: When you went to meet Najib, what did he tell you?
Saiful: Najib said it was Anwar's personal problem and that it also affected my future.
The 25-year-old said he got a similar response when he went to see others about his complaint.
The others were Assistant Commissioner Rodwan Mohd Yusof, former Parti Keadilan Rakyat Youth chief senator Ezam Mohd Nor, former national athlete Datuk Mumtaz Jaafar, Saiful's uncle Tuah, his friend Rahimi Osman and a religious teacher whom he called "Atuk".
Saiful, who continued with his testimony yesterday after the trial was adjourned for two weeks, said all these people were afraid for his future and that none of them had advised him to lodge a police report.
Karpal then told the court that Najib had committed an offence by not informing police of such a serious complaint by Saiful.
At this point, Solicitor-General II Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abiden interjected, asking whether Karpal was giving evidence to the court.
The court stood down for a few minutes after an exchange between Karpal and Yusof over provisions in the Criminal Procedure Code pertaining to failure to disclose a crime.
When proceedings resumed, Karpal questioned Saiful's oath-taking at the Federal Territory Mosque.
In August 2008, Saiful swore on the Quran that Anwar had sodomised him.
Karpal: Why did you swear on the Quran a day before nominations for the Permatang Pauh by-election which Anwar was contesting?
Saiful: It was just a coincidence. I had wanted to do it in July but could not do so due to circumstances.
In re-examining Saiful, Yusof asked about his visit to the Pusrawi hospital where he first underwent a medical examination following the alleged sodomy.
Yusof: Did you tell Dr Mohd Osman Abdul Hamid Osman that a plastic object was inserted into your anus?
(Dr Osman had stated in his medical report that plastic was introduced into Saiful's anus. Saiful had gone to him on the afternoon of June 28, 2008, complaining of pain in the abdomen and anus, and claiming that he had been sodomised.)
Saiful also denied saying this to the police and doctors at Kuala Lumpur Hospital.
The line of questioning then shifted to a Malaysiakini news report in which Saiful was quoted as saying that Anwar had sodomised him for the first time on June 26, 2008, which is the date stated in the charge.
Yusof: Based on that report, can you explain what you meant when you were quoted as saying that that was the first time you were sodomised?
Saiful: What I meant was that every time I was sodomised, it was Anwar who did it to me.
(Saiful was allegedly sodomised by Anwar earlier when they were in Hong Kong, Singapore and Bangkok. Saiful was Anwar's former aide and had followed his boss on several overseas assignments after the March 2008 general election.)
Yusof: Why didn't Ezam (Mohd Noor) and (Datuk) Mumtaz (Jaafar) encourage you to lodge a police report?
Saiful: They were worried about my future as I am still young.