Ahmad Zahid Hamidi's former press secretary told the Kuala Lumpur High Court today that she was aware of a signature stamp belonging to the deputy prime minister which she said was in the possession and control of Major Mazlina Mazlan @ Ramly.
Maj Gen (Rtd) Fadzlette Othman Merican Idris Merican said that use of the signature stamp was restricted to certificates and festive greeting cards sent out by Zahid.
"This is because I had brought certificates of appreciation before to Major Mazlina (Zahid’s former executive secretary) to be stamped with his signature upon his own instructions," she said.
Fadzlette said this when reading her witness statement in the trial of Zahid, who is facing 47 charges: 12 of criminal breach of trust, eight of corruption and 27 of money laundering involving tens of millions of ringgit belonging to Yayasan Akalbudi.
The defence witness said she had to monitor Mazlina as the latter had been negligent in handling Zahid’s personal accounts.
Fadzlette said she knew of issues involving Mazlina’s negligence as Zahid had mentioned this to her before and had instructed her to keep an eye on Mazlina as she (Fadzlette) was ranked higher in the armed forces.
"I informed Mazlina of what Zahid told me. I once asked Mazlina to show me the credit card statements and cheques that were prepared before they were to be signed by Zahid.
"However, Mazlina was always giving all sorts of excuses and never gave me what I wanted. This went on, and because I was constantly busy with official duties, I sometimes failed to monitor her and follow up with her on these matters," she said.
On work issues, Fadzlette, who is also the Umno president’s media director, said she and Mazlina were always in touch to ensure the smooth coordination of work. However, she said it was not easy to work with her as a team.
She said Mazlina did not mingle with the other officers and regularly failed to attend weekly meetings with the other officers at the Deputy Prime Minister's Office.
"I noticed that she liked to keep to herself and did not share her opinions with the other officers.
"When she was at the home ministry, Mazlina never respected me and failed to follow my orders although they involved official duties," she said.
In previous proceedings, Zahid told the court that Mazlina, without his knowledge, had used his signature stamp on Yayasan Akalbudi cheques to settle credit card payments belonging to him and his wife, Hamidah Khamis, when it should have been used for certificates of appreciation and greeting cards.
The trial is being heard before judge Collin Lawrence Sequerah.