KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 27 — Former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) trial could not proceed today as his lead defence lawyer, Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, is unwell.

Tania Scivetti, another lawyer representing Najib, notified the High Court of this at around noon today.

“I, unfortunately, have to inform Yang Arif that Tan Sri Shafee is unwell today, and he’s going to be seeing his doctors today for his condition. But hopefully he will be well to attend tomorrow’s proceedings, Yang Arif, so today we seek an adjournment,” she said.

When trial judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah asked about Shafee’s condition, Scivetti said: “He’s not feeling so well, he’s been having some issues. He’s been having some palpitations, so that’s why he’s a bit concerned today and he decided to consult his doctor today.”

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After acknowledging Shafee’s condition, deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib then said both the prosecution and defence were proposing extra dates for continued hearing of the 1MDB trial and to replace today’s hearing date.

“In total there will be eight days extra, Yang Arif, for the continued hearing of this case, subject to Your Lordship’s approval,” Akram said, with the judge approving those additional 1MDB trial dates.

The additional dates are March 14, 15, 27, and from April 1 to April 5.

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The judge said: “So we take those dates and tomorrow’s date will be maintained in the hope that Tan Sri Shafee will be able to be here.”

Shafee was initially expected to continue cross-examining 49th prosecution witness, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) investigator Nur Aida Arifin.

Nur Aida was seen this morning waiting in the witness stand and subsequently packing up stacks of documents and leaving the courtroom.

The 1MDB trial is scheduled to continue tomorrow morning.