AGC to provide Rosmah’s defence team with a copy of Sri Ram’s appointment letter

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The defence team in Rosmah Mansor’s corruption case will be provided with a copy of Gopal Sri Ram’s appointment letter as senior deputy public prosecutor (DPP) after the prosecution conceded to furnish the document to them.

Mohd Sahar Misni/The Star

Deputy public prosecutor Ahmad Akram Gharib conceded for Rosmah’s appeal to be allowed and also for the prosecution to give the appointment letter dated July 8, 2020, to the defence with exception of omitting certain portions irrelevant to Rosmah’s case.

Following this sudden twist of events, the Court of Appeal’s three-member bench led by Suraya Othman allowed Rosmah’s appeal to get Sri Ram’s appointment letter as senior DPP in her trial relating to RM1.25 billion solar hybrid project for 369 rural schools in Sarawak.

She acceded to Ahmad Akram’s request to give the copy of the document to the defence by Monday. The other judges presiding on the bench were Abu Bakar Jais and Ghazali Cha.

Rosmah brought the matter up for appeal to the Court of Appeal after the High Court dismissed her application to get Sri Ram’s appointment letter on Aug 19, last year.

Rosmah, 69, the wife of former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, is facing one count of soliciting RM187.5 million and two counts of receiving RM6.5 million in bribes from Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd’s managing director, Saidi Abang Samsudin in connection with the solar energy project.

The bribes were allegedly received through her former assistant 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 generator sets for 369 Sarawak rural schools worth RM1.25 billion from the Ministry of Education through direct negotiation.

The offences were allegedly committed at Lygon Cafe, Sunway Putra Mall, Jalan Putra here; Rosmah’s residence at Jalan Langgak Duta, Taman Duta and at Seri Perdana, Persiaran Seri Perdana, Precinct 10, Putrajaya between January 2016 and September 2017.

Earlier, in the midst of the appeal hearing proceeding, Suraya asked Ahmad Akram whether there was a letter of appointment for Sri Ram, to which he said yes.

After perusing the letter of appointment, Justice Suraya said from the court’s observation, the document did not satisfy two of the three requirements that Rosmah’s lawyers requested for.

She said the appointment letter was not dated on or before Nov 15, 2018, the day when Rosmah was charged in court and was not signed by the then attorney-general Tommy Thomas.

Instead, she said the letter was dated July 8 last year and was signed by the current Attorney-General Idrus Harun.

Rosmah’s defence team, which was led by lawyer Jagjit Singh, earlier sought the court to see when the appointment letter was dated, and who signed it and whether the letter contained particulars pertaining to the charge against Rosmah.

Outside the court, Jagjit told reporters that when Rosmah was charged, there was no such letter of appointment for Sri Ram to conduct as senior DPP.

He said the conduct of Sri Ram throughout the case of the prosecution, in his view, is a nullity because he was never appointed.

“Now the issue that is disturbing us is whether to apply for a retrial,” he said.