Ex-MACC chief demands Sri Ram justify decision to grant Riza Aziz plea deal

Lawyer Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram arrives at the Kuala Lumpur High Court March 12, 2020. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Lawyer Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram arrives at the Kuala Lumpur High Court March 12, 2020. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 19 — A former Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner has come out with guns blazing against Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram, demanding the latter explain the discharging not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA) decision recently granted to Riza Shahriz Abdul Aziz.

Tan Sri Dzulkifli Ahmad, in a series of tweets, questioned why Sri Ram has since kept mum over Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s stepson’s DNAA, and pointed out how the decision to grant the discharge would have been made by the sitting attorney general (AG) after acting upon the advice of Sri Ram.

Dzulkifli said that considering the retired Federal Court judge was appointed by former AG Tan Sri Tommy Thomas to handle several cases that involved 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Sri Ram has yet to come out and justify his recommendation.

“Why Gopal Sri Ram so quite (sic)? He has to come clean and explain! He is still the DPP (Deputy Public Prosecutor) in charge of the 1MDB cases.

“Because of that, the AG must act upon his advice. So Gopal Sri Ram has to explain why Riza’s representation was accepted.



“This is so that people don’t start asking questions or get confused. Don’t just sit quietly!,” read Dzulkifli’s thread of tweets.



This comes after outrage following the decision to grant Riza Aziz the DNAA over his five counts of money-laundering some US$248 million (RM1.07 billion) said to have been siphoned from 1MDB.

The decision to grant the discharge was made under the stewardship of the current AG Tan Sri Idrus Harun, who had said the settlement had been agreed in principle by his predecessor Thomas.

These claims have been repeatedly denied by Thomas, who was appointed AG by the former Pakatan Harapan coalition.

Meanwhile, according to a Malaysiakini report today, when asked to comment on ongoing disputes, Sri Ram was quoted as saying the final decision had been already made by the AG, therefore no further comment on the case is allowed.

“The AG has spoken and he has the final word on the matter. On our side, we can't comment anymore,” he was quoted as saying in the report.


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