KUALA LUMPUR, July 3 — Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi made an unexpected appearance in court today for the second day of party treasurer and former Cabinet colleague Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor’s corruption trial.
As Tengku Adnan’s trial was ongoing before High Court judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan, Zahid quietly slipped into the courtroom.
Zahid was seen greeting Tengku Adnan’s family before sitting with them in the front row of the public gallery reserved for family members and friends.
Tengku Adnan, who was in the dock farther away, then noticed Zahid and moved closer to greet and shake hands with him.
Zahid arrived when the sixth prosecution witness Datuk Mohd Hasbi Jaafar — the chief operating officer of Tengku Adnan’s company Tadmansori Holdings Sdn Bhd — was being questioned.
He left fewer than 10 minutes later and was then seen entering the courtroom hearing predecessor Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s separate corruption trial, also staying briefly before departing.
Zahid had surrendered his Umno presidential duties after he was first charged last year but announced on Sunday that he was returning to resume these.
Like Tengku Adnan, Zahid is also facing corruption charges and will be facing trial for 87 separate offences that also include money laundering.
Prior to the 14th general election, Zahid was home minister and deputy prime minister while Tengku Adnan was the Federal Territories minister in Najib’s Cabinet.
Tengku Adnan’s trial is being held on the fifth floor of the Kuala Lumpur court complex, just a short walk away from the courtroom hearing Najib’s case.
Tengku Adnan is on trial for allegedly receiving a RM2 million bribe via property developer Aset Kayamas Sdn Bhd’s Hong Leong Islamic Bank cheque dated June 14, 2016 that was deposited into Tadmansori Holdings’ CIMB bank account.
The offence was allegedly committed at CIMB’s Pusat Bandar Damansara Branch on June 14, 2016, with the penalty for the offence under Section 165 of the Penal Code punishable by a maximum two-year jail term or fine or both.