Asia Malaysia Judge turns down bid to impeach Najib for allegedly giving conflicting statements

Judge turns down bid to impeach Najib for allegedly giving conflicting statements

"No material contradictions or serious discrepancies between the two statements"

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Kuala Lumpur — The High Court on Monday (Jan 6) dismissed an application by the prosecution to impeach former Prime Minister Najib Razak for allegedly giving conflicting statements to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and to the court pertaining to his signatures on certain documents.

Judge Mohd Nazlan Mohd Ghazali ruled that there were no material contradictions, rejecting the need for impeachment proceedings.

“Having examined these statements, in my view, they are not irreconcilable because the apparent change in stand by the accused in the supplementary witness statement as to whether he had signed the exhibits or not is accompanied by his attempt to explain the basis for his earlier answers to MACC,” the judge said.

“As such I find that there are no material contradictions or serious discrepancies between the two statements as highlighted vis-a-vis the four exhibits.

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“There is, therefore, no justification to pursue the impeachment process against the accused in respect of this specific application by the prosecution.”

Najib faced impeachment proceeding for the alleged contradictory statements on his signature during the ongoing corruption trial related to SRC International, a former subsidiary of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

Najib told the court he was “misled” by signatures resembling his own when MACC officers showed him documents pertaining to SRC International’s bid to get a RM4 billion loan from the Retirement Fund Incorporated (KWAP).

“There was no doubt when you said that you confirmed the contents to MACC and told them that you signed it?” asked DPP K Sithambaram.

Najib’s reply was the original documents showed to him when his statement was recorded on the three occasions by the MACC were not the original documents. “I was confused by the signatures,” he added.

The DPP then reminded Najib that he told investigators he had signed the SRC letters.

“I assumed it was my signature. I cannot remember all things that happened nine years ago… You know when you are running the country, you have a thousand and one things happening,” Najib said.

Before an application was filed for alleged impeachment, Najib said he doubted the veracity of the signatures resembling his on some documents related to SRC International.

The prosecution said that, as a witness, Najib had provided different versions in his statements on his signature to the MACC and to the court and this was an impeachable offence.

Najib is disputing his signatures on a banking order to transfer RM32 million out of the SRC account to two other companies on Dec 29, 2014; on minutes from a Minister of Finance Incorporated meeting that detailed orders on how SRC funds should be utilised; and an approval for SRC to secure an additional RM2 billion loan from KWAP.

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