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DAP’s Loke: Pardons Board’s decision to reduce Najib’s sentence final, but he remains guilty

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 3 — DAP has reportedly called for the public to remain calm following the Pardons Board’s decision to reduce former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s sentence.

Its secretary-general Anthony Loke was quoted saying that the Pardons Board’s decision on the matter is final and thus cannot be challenged in any court, but does not in any way absolve Najib of his conviction.

“We understand that some Pakatan Harapan supporters are upset over Najib’s sentence reduction.

“But the Pardons Board decision is final and the Cabinet is not in any way involved in the decision,” Loke was quoted as saying by Malaysiakini in Negeri Sembilan.

Loke later said the move would not impact DAP’s relationship with Umno-Barisan Nasional in the coalition government but admitted that he does not know how this would impact the coalition’s chance in the next general election.

Explaining further, Loke said the country’s existing law accorded every person, including Najib, the right to request a pardon for their crimes.

“[In this case] he was not pardoned. He remains guilty of his charge, but only the sentence is halved,” Loke reportedly said, referring to Najib.

“The reason for [the sentence reduction] is only known to the Pardons Board.”

He further stressed that Najib still had other court cases.

Yesterday, the Federal Territories Pardons Board announced that Najib’s prison sentence for the misappropriation of RM42 million from a former 1MDB unit will be reduced by half while his fine will be cut from RM210 million to RM50 million.

The decision meant Najib, who began serving his prison term in August 2022, would be released by 2028.

He is likely to be released even earlier than that as he would be eligible for parole on good behaviour after serving just two-thirds of the six years.

In the official statement on behalf of the Federal Territories Pardons Board, the Prime Minister’s Department’s Legal Affairs Division as the board’s secretariat said this decision was made following the January 29 meeting of the Pardons Board for the federal territories of Kuala Lumpur, Labuan and Putrajaya.

It said the Pardons Board meeting, which was chaired by then Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, had considered five pardons applications including the one from Najib.

Under the Federal Constitution, the Agong chairs the meetings of the Pardons Board for the federal territories, which comprises the attorney general, the Federal Territories minister, and a maximum of three other members appointed by the Agong.