After former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has finally been sent to jail (because this bears repeating, otherwise it will feel like a fever dream), two unsurprising revelations have surfaced.
First and foremost, Najib had filed a petition seeking a royal pardon after he was sent to jail on 23 August.
As one might expect from a corrupt official, he is using the last resort to ensure that his 12-year jail sentence does not come to pass in full.
After all, we are talking about the man who tried to adduce new evidence and appeal twice, first by accusing the judge who made the original ruling of being partial due to his previous connection to Maybank so the sentence may be rendered ineffectual, second by dragging an investigating officer and an executive from the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MBD) through the mud.
Then he changed his entire defence counsel, made the new defence lawyer Hisyam Teh Poh Teik request for more time to prepare for the case (which was summarily denied), and even on the day of the first final appeal hearing, Mr Teh tried to discharge himself as the head defence counsel to stall for more time.
Every trick in the book there is, Najib has tried.
The former Prime Minister was sentenced in July 2020, and he is only starting to serve his sentence in August 2022.
The second unsurprising development is that Najib is still considered a member of Parliament.
In accordance with Malaysian law, any MP will be disqualified from their post if he or she is convicted and sentenced to more than one year of prison or receives a fine of not less than RM2,000, unless they receive a royal pardon.
Having said that, the Parliament speaker Azhar Azizan Harun confirmed that Najib has filed the petition for a royal pardon last Friday, within 14 days of the Federal Court’s ruling.
This means that Najib will remain as the MP for Pekan until the petition has been concluded.
Alas, former Prime Minister Mahathir has stated that Najib will likely receive the royal pardon since he has connections to higher places.
12-year jail term? RM210 million fine?
Non-existent in the face of nepotism.
Therefore, Najib will probably keep his position and influence in the parliament, despite having a high-profile corruption case bogging down his political career.
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