KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 18 — Umno today asked the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to verify if there was a leak of its investigation papers on the trial judge who heard Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s case over the misappropriation of RM42 million of government-owned firm SRC International Sdn Bhd.
In a statement posted on Twitter, Umno secretary-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan claimed that a document alleged to be MACC’s investigation paper on judge Datuk Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali was purported to have been leaked, further alleging that this had gone viral.
He said this purported investigation paper had referred to Section 220 of the Penal Code, which covers the offence of committing persons for trial or confinement while knowing such action is contrary to law.
Ahmad Maslan noted the Federal Court’s unanimous decision to reject Najib’s bid to add in purported new evidence regarding Mohd Nazlan’s purported conflict of interest, and the MACC investigation paper on the judge having been sent to the Attorney General’s Chambers since May 18 or three months ago.
He then said Umno is of the view that “MACC has to confirm or deny the validity of the investigation paper that has already gone viral”, and that the “Attorney General’s Chambers has to announce if there will be further action for that investigation paper”.
On May 21, the MACC announced that it had completed investigations — which it said had started in March — in a case involving Nazlan, and said the investigation papers had been presented to the Attorney General’s Chambers on May 18 for further study and direction.
In the months leading up to Najib’s final SRC appeal hearing at the Federal Court, wild allegations have been made online against Mohd Nazlan in what appears to be mudslinging attempts against him. Mohd Nazlan had, however, lodged a police report over fugitive blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin’s April 20 article which had claimed investigation over a purported RM1 million sum in his account, and denied the “false, baseless and malicious accusations” in that article.
Ahead of his final SRC appeal hearing this month, Najib had in June filed an application to nullify or push for retrial of the SRC case by seeking to add new evidence regarding Mohd Nazlan’s purported conflict of interest due to alleged failure to disclose his previous Maybank roles. Najib had, however, ultimately dropped any allegations of bribery against the judge.
On Tuesday, the Federal Court’s five-judge panel unanimously rejected Najib’s bid to ultimately seek for a retrial, pointing out that the purported “new” evidence was actually evidence already available before the SRC trial began in 2019 and Mohd Nazlan’s previous Maybank role was already known to Najib’s lawyers back then.
The Federal Court had also said the purported new oral and documentary evidence which Najib wanted to add to the SRC case were “irrelevant” to the criminal charges against him and failed to show conflict of interest by Mohd Nazlan.
The Federal Court said the rejection of the application to add evidence to the SRC case would not result in miscarriage of justice, as such evidence was already available at the SRC trial or could have been discovered then through reasonable diligence and were also totally irrelevant to the charges, and as Najib could still challenge the High Court and Court of Appeal judgments in the SRC appeal at the Federal Court.
The Federal Court’s hearing of the SRC appeal finally began today, after Najib’s lawyers failed on Tuesday to have the appeal postponed for up to three or four months and after Najib’s new defence counsel Hisyam Teh Poh Teik failed in his bid to discharge himself from representing Najib.
Najib is both a former prime minister and former president of Umno.
Umno’s current president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi yesterday voiced support for Najib, while Umno Youth chief Datuk Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki appeared to criticise the Federal Court’s decision not to allow the application to add in additional evidence.