Ahmad Zahid to appeal against High Court’s DNAA decision

KUALA LUMPUR – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi will file an appeal at the Court of Appeal against the decision of the High Court in granting him a discharge, but not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA), on the 47 charges of criminal breach of trust (CBT), corruption, and money laundering in connection with Yayasan Akalbudi funds.

His lawyer, Datuk Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, when met by reporters after the proceeding at the High Court here today, said he would file the appeal tomorrow.

Earlier, High Court Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah granted Ahmad Zahid the DNAA after allowing an application by deputy public prosecutor Datuk Mohd Dusuki Mokhtar to halt the case as they wanted to investigate the case further.

Meanwhile, another lawyer representing Ahmad Zahid, Datuk Ahmad Zaidi Zainal, said since his client was charged on Oct 19, 2018, the defence had submitted several representations to the Attorney General’s Chambers (AGC).

“The latest representation sought for the charges to be reviewed and withdrawn as there was no basis for the charges.

“In February this year, the defence was given a copy of a letter from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to the AGC which, among other things, stated that a comprehensive investigation is very important so that the investigation team and the prosecution are not criticised by the public and accused of selective prosecution,” he said.

Ahmad Zaidi said he believed that following the application by the AGC today (to halt the case), the matter would likely be manipulated by certain quarters.

“However, we would like to emphasise here that the Attorney-General only exercises his discretion as provided under Article 145 (3) of the Federal Constitution.

“In fact, this is not the first time for an Attorney-General to use his discretion as provided under the law to take action to withdraw charges made in court,” he added.

Meanwhile, Ahmad Zahid, when met by reporters,  expressed his gratitude over the court’s decision to stop the proceedings against him.

“Our task in UMNO and Barisan Nasional is to continue the struggle to stop politically motivated accusations,” he said.

Ahmad Zahid, 70, had sent a 200-page letter of representation to the AGC in January and February this year as a basis for consideration for the charges made against him to be dropped.

A total of 47 charges were made against him,  namely eight charges of corruption, 12 charges for criminal breach of trust and 27 charges of money laundering involving Akalbudi Foundation funds.

The trial was now in the defence stage with a total of 15 witnesses, including Ahmad Zahid, having called to testify. – BERNAMA