PETALING JAYA: An officer in the Attorney-General’s Office (AGC) has released a damning affidavit alleging two cheques worth RM9.5 million were issued by former prime minister Najib Razak to Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, the lawyer who led the prosecution team in Anwar Ibrahim’s 2015 appeal against his sodomy conviction.
Siti Rahayu Mohd Mumazaini, 34, said the cheques were deposited into Shafee’s CIMB Bank account on Sept 13, 2013 and Feb 17, 2014.
“The information was obtained by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) after the issuance of an Order obtained under subsection 44(1) of AMLA to freeze Shafee’s CIMB Bank account,” Siti Rahayu said in her affidavit, referring to the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act (AMLA).
The affidavit was released by Anwar today, and was also attached with a copy of a bank statement of Shafee’s account, as well as photocopy images of the two cheques from Najib.
“I ask those responsible for safeguarding our institutions to consider corrective steps that must be taken to give all Malaysians and the entire world confidence in the integrity of our legal system,” Anwar said in releasing the affidavit.
Last year, Anwar filed a suit to quash his sodomy conviction, saying he had not received a fair trial, and citing a payment amounting to RM9.5 million allegedly from Najib.
The High Court in November last year struck out the suit, saying Anwar had not given any evidence to support his allegations.
Anwar said the affidavit by Siti Rahayu proved his claim of the huge payment to Shafee.
“I believe that in the New Malaysia we must be uncompromising in our commitment to the rule of law and to reestablishing credibility of the judiciary and the legal fraternity. These abuses of power should not be allowed to continue and there must be accountability,” said the PKR president-elect, who was granted a royal pardon before his release from jail in the wake of Pakatan Harapan’s electoral victory last May.
Shafee had previously dismissed the allegations about him receiving RM9.5 million from Najib as “nonsense”.
“I was never paid RM9.5 million to prosecute Anwar’s case,” he had said.
Anwar in his suit last year had argued that an earlier verdict by the Court of Appeal in 2014, which found him guilty of sodomising Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan, was done in an unconstitutional manner.
A Federal Court bench in February 2015 upheld the Court of Appeal verdict, and sent Anwar to five years’ jail.
Anwar today said Shafee should never have been allowed to lead the prosecution team against him.
“Appointing an outside prosecutor is not an ordinary practice by the Attorney-General, and is even more irregular in this case when the individual appointed is a known close confidante of Najib, who is himself materially involved in the case.
Shafee was also witness to events in the conspiracy against me that took place in the presence of Najib, making both parties potential witnesses,” he added.