Convicting Najib of graft will take time, Kepong MP reminds public

Radzi Razak
Datuk Seri Najib Razak is pictured at the Kuala Lumpur Court Complex November 7, 2019. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 16 — Kepong MP Lim Lip Eng today urged the public to be patient and not blame Pakatan Harapan (PH) government for not convicting former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on charges of financial misappropriation linked to 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) as it will take time. 

Lim, in a statement congratulating former Pandan MP and PKR vice president Rafizi Ramli and former bank clerk Johari Muhammad for being acquitted after seven years for their National Feedlot Corporation(NFC) case, said Malaysians should be patient and allow justice to run its course in Najib's cases.

“Just like the long judiciary journey endured by Rafizi and Johari, Malaysians must allow the court process, which can be a very long and tedious process, to mete out any punishment to former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak and his conspirators who are charged over the 1MDB crimes.

“This is the reason why Malaysians have to be patient and must always respect our judiciary system, instead of blaming the government for having yet to put Najib, Rosmah Mansor and the other co-accused behind bars,” he said. 

Yesterday, the Shah Alam High Court acquitted Rafizi and Johari of disclosing the banking details belonging to the NFC and breaching the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (Bafia). 

Rafizi and Johari were also fully discharged him from the 30-month jail sentence meted out by the Shah Alam Sessions Court on Feb 7, 2018.

Both of them were charged in 2012 for violating the now defunct Section 97 of Bafia for disclosing four accounts belong to NFC and Mohd Salleh, who is the husband of former Wanita Umno chief and women minister Datuk Seri Shahrizad Abdul Jalil.

The conviction prevented Rafizi from contesting in the general election and former PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail took over the Pandan seat.

Najib was recently ordered to enter his defence on seven charges on criminal breach of trust, abuse of power and money laundering for the former 1MDB subsidiary, SRC International.

He faces up to 20 years in prison, whipping and a fine, if convicted.

The former Umno president is also facing 21 counts of receiving, using or sending illicit funds as well as four counts of corruption involving US$681 million that appeared in his personal bank accounts. 

Other than that, he was also jointly charged with former Treasury Secretary-General Tan Sri Irwan Serigar related to RM 6.6 billion ringgit of government payments to an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund as well as monies linked to rail and pipeline projects that involve Chinese companies. Najib faces six counts of criminal breach of trust for his alleged role.

Meanwhile Najib's wife Rosmah is facing 19 charges, 17 of which are money-laundering offences, after being detained overnight by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in April.

Two others were bribery charges relating to the Sarawak solar-hybrid project.

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