PETALING JAYA: An Umno leader has urged the chief justice (CJ) and attorney-general (AG) to set the record straight following a minister’s confirmation that Justice Nazlan Ghazali had been found to have committed wrongdoing when presiding over Najib Razak’s SRC International case.
Law and institutional reform minister Azalina Othman Said had said the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s (MACC) probe on Nazlan concluded that he had violated the Judges’ Code of Ethics and had a conflict of interest when presiding over the case.
Umno Supreme Council member Puad Zarkashi said the ball was now in the court of CJ Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat and AG Idrus Harun, and that they must take responsibility and respond to this matter immediately.
“Do the CJ and AG want to trivialise the role of investigative bodies like MACC?” he told FMT.
“The government must stand its ground in this matter. Don’t allow Malaysia’s justice system to be destroyed.
“Azalina’s revelation is a necessary step to balance the interests of all parties, it’s not (an) interference from the executive.”
In a letter dated March 15, Najib’s solicitors, Shafee & Co, had asked Azalina whether MACC had concluded that Nazlan had breached the code and had a conflict of interest.
In her letter replying to Shafee, Azalina said: “I can confirm that the answers to the questions (you have set out) are in the affirmative.”
She said this was based on a report of MACC’s findings dated Feb 20, which the agency extended to her.
On Feb 24, a seven-member Federal Court panel led by Tengku Maimun accused MACC of not following protocol when conducting its investigation into Nazlan.
The investigation followed allegations that unexplained sums of money had been deposited into Nazlan’s bank account.
In her judgment, Tengku Maimun said investigative agencies like MACC must consult the CJ before initiating a probe against a superior court judge.
Nazlan, now a Court of Appeal judge, had convicted Najib in July 2020 on charges of abuse of power, money laundering and criminal breach of trust over RM42 million in funds belonging to SRC.
He sentenced Najib to 12 years’ jail and fined him RM210 million. Najib’s appeal to the Court of Appeal was dismissed in December 2021. The Federal Court on Aug 23 last year upheld the conviction and sentence.
Najib began serving his 12-year prison term immediately following the Federal Court decision.
Last Friday, a separate Federal Court bench dismissed Najib’s application for a review of his conviction and sentence.