Thursday, December 2, 2021

Rosmah ordered to enter defence on graft charges over solar hybrid project

Rosmah Mansor is told to answer to charges of corruption relating to the RM1.25 billion solar hybrid project.

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The High Court today ordered Rosmah Mansor to enter her defence on three graft charges over a solar hybrid project worth RM1.25 billion for rural schools in Sarawak.

Judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan made the ruling, saying the prosecution had proven a prima facie case against Rosmah, 69, the wife of former prime minister Najib Razak.

“On maximum evaluation of the evidence, I find the prosecution has proven a prima facie case against the accused on all charges,” he said.

He also said the prosecution had adduced credible evidence to prove the elements of the charges which, if unrebutted or unexplained, would warrant a conviction.

“I therefore call for the accused to enter her defence,” he added.

Rosmah chose to testify under oath from the witness stand, and the court fixed nine days from June 9 to hear her defence.

Rosmah had been slapped with one charge of soliciting RM187.5 million and two counts of receiving bribes totalling RM6.5 million from former Jepak Holdings managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin.

The bribes were allegedly received through her former special officer, Rizal Mansor, as a reward for helping Jepak Holdings secure the Hybrid Photovoltaic Solar System Integrated Project, as well as the maintenance and operation of diesel gen-sets, for 369 Sarawak rural schools worth RM1.25 billion from the education ministry through direct negotiation.

The acts were said to have been committed between January 2016 and September 2017

The charges, framed under Section 16(a)(A) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act, provide for imprisonment of up to 20 years and a fine of not less than five times the amount of the gratification or RM10,000, whichever is higher, upon conviction.

The prosecution is led by senior deputy public prosecutor Gopal Sri Ram while lawyer Jagjit Singh is leading the defence team.

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