Rosmah no fool, clever and wily

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Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor was no fool; she was far too clever and wily to make the demands of bribery totalling millions in the RM1.25 billion solar hybrid project in Sarawak herself, the High Court found.

Reuters

In the written judgment by Justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan, the court found Rosmah had used and instructed her former aide, Datuk Rizal Mansor, to do her bidding and solicit monies from former Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director, Saidi Abang Samsudin.

Rosmah had claimed she would have negotiated the deal herself with Saidi and Rayyan Radzwill Abdullah (Saidi’s business partner) if it was for her benefit.

“It would have been undignified of her to do so. The accused appears to be dignified and thinks very highly of herself.

“This was evident from her demeanour on the witness stand and her standing in society as the Prime Minister’s wife then.

Raja Faisal Hishan/The Star

“Negotiating openly would have exposed her misdeeds,” the judge said.

These were some of the remarks contained in the 116-page written judgment by Justice Zaini in which he convicted Rosmah of one count of soliciting RM187.5 million and two counts of accepting RM1.5 million and RM5 million, monies linked to the project in Sarawak.

He sentenced her to 10 years’ jail on each of the three charges and a RM970 million fine. He ordered the jail terms to run concurrently.

If she fails to pay the fine, she will have to serve another 10 years on each charge, this time consecutively.

The decision was delivered shortly after he dismissed Rosmah’s application to recuse him from presiding over her case.

He said Rosmah’s defence was a bare denial and unsubstantiated and that the prosecution had succeeded in proving its case beyond reasonable doubt.

“The accused is therefore guilty of all three charges,” he said yesterday.

The judge also said Rosmah dominated her husband, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, and had control over the former prime minister.

He also alluded to the famous “Can I advise you something” audio clip between Najib and Rosmah that was released by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.

He said it was clear from the audio recording that the accused gave instructions to Najib on government affairs.

“No fewer than three witnesses, namely Datuk Rizal Mansor, former Minister of Education Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid and the ministry’s then secretary-general Tan Sri Madinah Mohamed, have positively identified the voices in the recording as those of Najib and the accused.

“It was no ordinary conversation between spouses, for it was about government affairs,” said the judge.

He further added that Rizal was telling the truth when he said the accused had an overbearing nature and the ability to influence decisions in the civil service as he had worked with her for many years.

“She has a steely character and would not hesitate to admonish anyone. It was also evident during the trial that she was not cowed when being cross-examined by the learned counsel (Datuk Seri Gopal Sri Ram) for the prosecution, which I might add is no mean feat considering the learned counsel’s eminence.” – The Star