GE14 funds: Lawyer claims MACC may call Hishammuddin

Zanariah Abd Mutalib

PUTRAJAYA: A lawyer claimed that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) may be calling former defence minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein to give a statement on the investigation into the alleged misappropriation of funds meant for the 14th General Election (GE14).

Datuk Shaharuddin Ali, the lawyer representing former Malaysian External Intelligence Organisation (MEIO) director-general Datuk Hasanah Abdul Hamid also claimed that in the proceeding to request for an extension of remand for his client at the Magistrate's Court, here, today, the MACC was also looking to track two Saudi Arabian princes to assist in investigation.

Hasanah was remanded for five days beginning Wednesday and Shaharuddin said the MACC applied to have her remand extended seven more days.

However, he informed that the court only allowed for a one day extension. Her remand which was supposed to expire today would now end tomorrow.

Elaborating, Shaharuddin said the MACC gave nine reasons in the application to extend the remand order against Hasanah.

Among the reasons were that the commission wanted to trace the balance of the money and several luxury watches that have not been found, apart from wanting to trace the movements and raid the house of his client.

"There is also the issue of bringing home three individuals believed to be involved in the case from Abu Dhabi.

"What is surprising is that Datuk Seri Hishammuddin's name was mentioned as someone that MACC could be investigating with regard to the issue involving Datuk Hasanah and seven other MEIO officers. They said they might be calling him in soon.

"We informed the court that five days (remand) are sufficient. The progress of this investigation is slow and this can't be placed on Datuk Hasanah's shoulders," he said when met at the court house, here, today.

He also said that Hasanah gave her statement in court stating that she was carrying out her duties as MEIO director-general under the order of the government of Malaysia and denied Hishammuddin and the two Saudi Arabian princes' involvement in the case.

Meanwhile, MACC deputy chief commissioner (operations) Datuk Seri Azam Baki when asked to comment on the claim that Hishammuddin would be called in declined to comment.

"No comment. Anyone who can assist in investigations will be called in," he briefly said when contacted. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd