Najib confirms asking for protection but not under witness scheme

Police have cordoned off the private residence of former premier Najib Razak since last week while investigations are carried out into 1MDB.

KUALA LUMPUR: Former prime minister Najib Razak has confirmed that he has sought police protection for himself and his family, but denied that he had asked to be put under a witness protection programme.

In a statement issued today, a spokesman for Najib said the former premier had only lodged a police report asking for protection for himself and his family “as they fear for their safety after the 14th general election”.

However the Malay Mail, which had reported the request for “witness protection”, quoted an unidentified police source as maintaining that the report lodged with Sentul police had specifically contained the term. The newspaper said the concluding words of the report were “…memohon diletakkan dibawah program perlindungan saksi”.

Naji’s denial of the request for “witness protection” came in a two-paragraph statement in response to media articles about his report lodged at Sentul police headquarters at 5pm on Saturday in which he said that there was a clear threat to his life and those of his family members.

(Witness protection is a programme in many countries where a witness is offered a new life under a new identity in exchange for testimony in cases where there is a credible threat to the witness’s life.)

Najib’s home and family residences have been searched by federal commercial crime and anti money-laundering officers in their investigations into 1Malaysia Development Bhd. Najib has also been asked to make a statement at the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission tomorrow about financial transactions of government-owned SRC International, a former 1MDB subsidiary.

The former prime minister, accompanied by his wife Rosmah Mansor, left Kuala Lumpur today on a constituency visit today to Pekan, Pahang, which he has represented in Parliament for 42 years.

Rosmah says she’s relaxed, wants normal life to resume

Najib, Rosmah arrive in Pekan

Lawyer denies Najib asked for police protection