Najib deserves a fair trial

Opinion  |  James Chai
Published:  |  Modified:

COMMENT | You are going to hate me for saying this: Najib Razak should be given the fairest trial possible for all his cases.

April 3, 2019 was the start of the trial of the century. It is closely watched by the world - it is the first time in history that a former prime minister of Malaysia is charged in court.

For all the media fanfare and the public sensationalism, this is the most important trial to get right. Getting right doesn’t imply that the trial outcome must find Najib guilty; instead, getting right means ensuring Najib’s right to a fair trial is upheld.

This means the judges involved must be ready to consider and evaluate the requests of Najib and his legal team to a fair trial, provided they are reasonable.

The reasons why we should give Najib the fairest trial possible are a few. One, when the eventuality of a guilty verdict comes, Najib will have exhausted his excuses and must concede to the inviolability of the legal process and the law.

Two, a fair trial would ensure that those who are still in denial of Najib’s alleged wrongdoings get a proper opportunity to be convinced of his guilt.

But the most important reason for a fair trial is to make sure our society believes in justice again. A fair trial will make sure the legal system works, and a system that is fair to even the worst criminal shall be fair to all.

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