Fingers-crossed no sick leave, absenteeism on Rosmah’s D-day on Sept 1

FOLLOWING several disruptions involving high-profile cases in recent times, it is hoped that Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor will be able to find out from the Kuala Lumpur High Court this Thursday (Sept 1) itself if she will be acquitted or found guilty of three graft charges relating to a RM1.25 bil solar hybrid project involving 369 rural schools in Sarawak.

If the wife of ex-premier Datuk Seri Najib Razak is acquitted, she will be set free unless the prosecution files an appeal which must be done within 14 days after Sept 1. The prosecution is led by senior deputy public prosecutor Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram.

If Rosmah, 70, is found guilty on one or all three charges, her lawyers led by Datuk Jagjit Singh along with Datuk Akberdin Abdul Kader and Azrul Zulkifli Stork will submit a mitigation plea before Judge Zaini.

The court may decide on punishment after hearing mitigation or fix another date for sentencing. If the sentence is decided on the same day, the court may also hear submissions for a stay of the sentence pending appeal.

Under Section 24 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009, a person convicted of corruption faces up to 20 years’ jail and a fine of five times the amount received or solicited.

Concerns over the smoothness of Rosmah’s court proceeding abounds given the trial of UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi yesterday (Aug 29) ended early at the Kuala Lumpur High Court after the Bagan Datuk MP said the was unwell and asked to be allowed to continue testifying the next morning.

Zahid was, however, fine the whole of Saturday (Aug 27) as he spearheaded the UMNO president’s special briefing that attracted 3,000-strong party delegates at the Kuala Lumpur World Centre in the afternoon before chairing the UMNO Supreme Council meeting in the evening (from 8.30pm to 11.15pm).

In his trial, Zahid who was also a former home minister faces 47 criminal charges including  12 counts of criminal breach of trust (CBT) in relation to RM31 mil charitable foundation Yayasan Akalbudi’s funds, 27 counts of money-laundering, and eight counts of bribery charges over RM21.25 mil of alleged bribes.

On Friday (Aug 26), former Tabung Haji chairman Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim who succeeded in getting his Court of Appeal hearing over graft and money laundering offences postponed on in view of a bout of acute gastroenteritis had apparently made a speedy recovery.

This is because barely 24 hours later, there was pictorial evidence of him showing up at the UMNO Supreme Council’s Working Committee meeting which took place on Saturday night at the Kuala Lumpur World Trade Centre.

The meeting chaired by party president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was also attended by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and UMNO deputy president Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.

Rosmah, 70, is charged with soliciting RM187.5 mil to help Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd secure the RM1.25 bil solar hybrid project.

She also faces two other charges of receiving RM5 mil and another RM1.5 mil at the PM’s official residence and her Duta private residence respectively between December 2016 and September 2017.

Judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan is set to deliver his verdict in the first of Rosmah’s criminal proceedings on Thursday.

Her husband, Najib, began his 12-year jail sentence on Aug 23 at the Kajang Prison (alongside  a RM210 mil fine) after the Federal Court upheld his conviction on all seven charges in relation to embezzlement of RM42 mil SRC International Sdn Bhd. – Aug 30, 2022


Main photo credit: Malay Mail

Subscribe and get top news delivered to your Inbox everyday for FREE