Malaysiakini News

Dr M versus Najib raises five possible implications

Published:  |  Modified:

Veteran newsman Abdul Kadir Jasin has raised five possible implications if the case filed against Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak by former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad and two others is heard in court.

Kadir in a blog post yesterday listed the five as:

  • the case would test how far an ordinary citizen can take legal action against a public officer with political ties;
  • it would test the independence of the country’s judicial system;
  • it would determine how far the actions of a prime minister are immune from the law;
  • it would open the federal constitution and public administration system to interpretation; and
  • it would allow the plaintiffs to summon as many witnesses as possible.

On the fifth implication, Kadir said: “If the court agrees to hear this case, the plaintiffs can attempt to summon as many witnesses as possible, including foreign journalists who had made claims of corruption by Najib.”

The plaintiffs' lawyer, Mohd Khatri Abdulla, yesterday told Malaysiakini that Najib’s wife Rosmah Mansor may be subpoenaed as a witness in relation to the legal suit.

Mohd Khatri also said he intends to subpoena Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak as well as Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed.

Propaganda machine

At the same time, Kadir claimed that Najib’s cyber warfare and propaganda machine are unlikely to be able to manipulate facts in the legal suit.

This, he claimed, was because they were currently too busy “fighting among themselves to prove who is the most loyal and who were the ‘wolves in sheep’s clothing’”.

“This suit can also be seen in the context of the Citizens’ Declaration calling for Najib’s removal as prime minister.

“The three plaintiffs are all signatories of the declaration signed on March 4,” said Kadir.

Mahathir, together with former Batu Kawan Umno division vice-chairperson Khairuddin Abu Hassan and former Langkawi Wanita Umno member Anina Saadudin, had filed the case at Kuala Lumpur High Court for alleged breach of fiduciary duty and misfeasance in public office.

Misfeasance is a legal term referring to actions that are legal but performed improperly.

In the suit, Najib, as the sole defendant, is accused of breaching his fiduciary duty and misfeasance in public office, by compromising various investigations against him in relation to the 1MDB scandal.

The plaintiffs are seeking RM2.6 billion in exemplary damages and aggravated damages of RM42 million.

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