It could be a year till Najib’s case is heard in apex court, says Dr M

(FMT) – Dr Mahathir Mohamad has questioned the Court of Appeal’s decision to grant Najib Razak a stay of execution and sentence pending the outcome of the latter’s appeal at the apex court.

The Langkawi MP said Najib might have to wait for a “year or more” before his appeal is heard at the Federal Court.

“In the meantime, he is as free as an innocent man. While he waits, he is allowed to continue as an MP and maybe even contest in the next general election (GE15).

“And if he wins, he could become the prime minister. Malaysia may create a record once again by having a convict as prime minister,” he said in a blogpost, adding those who had been convicted for minor offences would not be granted such a stay of execution.

He added that the law allowed for such provisions and it was the judges’ right to grant the stay.

Earlier today, the Court of Appeal said Najib could remain free pending the outcome of his SRC International Sdn Bhd corruption appeal to the Federal Court.

This follows its decision to uphold the former prime minister’s conviction on graft charges today.

The Pekan MP was sentenced to 12 years’ jail and fined RM210 million after being found guilty on seven counts of corruption.

Mahathir, the country’s fourth and seventh prime minister, also hit back at an Umno leader who previously questioned if the former only knew the word “kleptocracy”, especially when criticising Najib.

Mahathir said it was not true, adding he had also used words like “thief”, “rogue” and “corruptor”.

On Sunday, Puad Zarkashi questioned Mahathir and former prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin on their silence over the issue of former Bank Negara Malaysia governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz and her husband’s alleged link to the 1MDB scandal, calling it “hypocritical”.

He took a dig at the two former prime ministers’ ability to only talk about kleptocracy when it came to certain leaders.

According to the Collins dictionary, “kleptocracy” is defined as a government where officials are politically corrupt and financially self-interested. The word has now become a catchphrase among opposition politicians and their supporters since the 1MDB scandal was exposed.