Dr Mahathir: Why make Apandi’s settlement terms a secret?

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Mahathir does not think Apandi deserves to be compensated at all.

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is puzzled as to why the government has decided to classify the terms of settlement of the civil suit by former Attorney General (AG) Tan Sri Apandi Ali under the Official Secrets Act.

In a posting on his Facebook page, Dr Mahathir said he was mystified by the decision of Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Institutional Reform) Datuk Seri Azalina Othman to make a secret of the settlement of Apandi’s demand for compensation for his dismissal.

“Apandi, the former AG of the government of (Datuk Seri) Najib Tun Razak, made his demand publicly. He even named the amount at RM2,233,599.36. Yet the compensation made by the government is a secret. Why?” asked Dr Mahathir.

Yusof Mat Isa

He said he has a reason to find out why because he does not think Apandi deserves to be compensated at all.

On Wednesday, Azalina said both parties have agreed to keep the negotiations and terms a secret.

“While settlement negotiations are ongoing, the plaintiff, represented by Tetuan Shukor Baljit and Partners, and the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) agreed that terms of settlement were kept confidential and not disclosed to the public.

“In line with the agreement, all communication in regards with the negotiations and agreed settlement terms were classified as secret according to the provisions of the Official Secrets Act,” Azalina said in a Parliamentary written reply on Wednesday when responding to M Kulasegaran (PH-Ipoh Barat), who asked the government to reveal the terms of settlement in the civil suit filed by Apandi.

On April 13 last year, it was reported that the suit filed by Apandi against Dr Mahathir and the government over the termination of his contract as AG was settled out of court at the Kuala Lumpur High Court.

Apandi filed a suit on Oct 13, 2020, seeking a declaration that the termination of his contract as AG by the former prime minister was unlawful. He named Dr Mahathir and the government as the first and second defendants respectively. – NST