According the the police the murder case of Rural and Entrepreneurial Development Assistant Minister Datuk Norjan Khan Bahadar, in Room 208, Shangrila Hotel Kota Kinabalu, at Bandaran Berjaya, on 11-2-2004 has been solved.
The prime suspect, Shamsudin Bistami, a Bugis illegal immigrant going by the false identity of Azman Bakar @ Loying, was arrested at a kampung house along Mile 2, off Jalan Apas in Tawau, the following night.
He is an ex-convict, having served a four-year jail term here after being found guilty in 1999 for second-degree murder Section 304 of the Penal Code. He was deported to Indonesia after serving sentence, but managed to secure a Malaysian Identity Card and returned to Sabah last year, working as a waiter at the hotel’s coffee house for eight months prior to the incident.
He was said to have admitted committing the crime by using an ice pick. Police also recovered some valuables, a wrist watch, RM1,450 and two mobile phones, of which one was believed belonged to Norjan, from the 27-year-old.
The police reclassified as robbery-cum-murder.
The Tawau Magistrate’s Court granted a police application to remand the suspect until Feb 19. He has been flown to Kota Kinabalu from Tawau for follow-up action. Shamsudin was picked up at a relative’s house in Tawau by a police party led by State CID chief SAC II Mohd Bakri Zinin, at about 11.30pm 12-2-2004 night.
They also found an IC in his possession, bearing the name Azman Bakar @ Loying, which was later confirmed to be fake.
Investigations revealed that the suspect had, at 4.13am Wednesday, sent a pot of milk to Norjan’s room on her request. Some minutes later he again went to the room to return RM2 change and a pot of hot water.
Police believed it was at that time that Shamsudin attacked Norjan with a sharp metal weapon, similar to an ice pick, and stabbed her several times on her face. Police, however, have yet to find the murder weapon.
Norjan’s body was found lying on the floor at a room in the hotel on the second floor with stab wounds on her face and neck at 9am.
After going off duty at 7am, the suspect was believed to have gone to the hotel’s staff living quarters before proceeding to check into a hotel in the city at around 8am where he stayed till the next day.
From there, he went to Tuaran at around 5pm where he checked into another hotel, staying until noon Thursday, before paying a private taxi RM500 to take him to Tawau where he arrived at around 8.30pm the same day.
Police believed that Shamsudin was preparing to flee to Indonesia, using his relative’s home, as a halfway house.
Police had on Thursday arrested three other suspects, a 27-year-old Pakistani businessman and two of Norjan’s aides to facilitate investigations into the murder.
Ilyas thanked the public for providing them with information leading to the suspect’s arrest, and commended the Special Task Force under Bakri, Kota Kinabalu district Police Chief ACP Hamdan Mohamed and Tawau district police chief ACP Kuik Harris for a job well done.
While we congratulate the police and the responsible public to help solve the case fast, our attention is once again drawn to the security in the state. Imagine how easy an ex-convict could still find his way into this country assuming a new (fake) identity. This is not the only case that we came to know. There are many more cases which are either not known or protected by people with personal interests.
If we only concentrate on improving a system, upgrade it with the latest technology, without replacing the people who actually implement the system, even the high-tech MyKad is heading for failure. The removal of 50,000 phantom voters from the Sabah electoral roll has not totally cleaned it up. Illegals are still very much around us in our everyday life.
If we still keep the bunch of corrupted, irresponsible and selfish politicians in the coming election, nothing will improve no matter how hard our Prime Minister, Dato' Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is trying.
Change the soup, and replace the bowl!