The Court of Appeal today approved Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s application for the temporary return of his passport that will enable him to travel to Singapore to visit his daughter Nooryana Najwa who is expected to give birth soon.
A three-man Court of Appeal bench led by Datuk Seri Kamaludin Md Said allowed the former prime minister’s application after finding that there were reasonable grounds for him to get back the document.
Najib was ordered to return his passport to the court on Nov 22.
Earlier, his lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah submitted that Najib was applying for a temporary release of his travel document to accompany Nooryana who is expected to give birth to her second child in early November in Singapore.
Shafee said the reason Najib was seeking for his passport to be released from Oct 20 to Nov 22 was because the latter has to renew his passport and will only be travelling on Nov 3 after completing the parliamentary debate on Budget 2022.
“On Nov 3, he leaves for Singapore, then undergoes (Singapore government-mandated) quarantine of 10 days in Singapore. He could be reunited with his daughter on Nov 14.
“He will return to Kuala Lumpur on Nov 20, giving him six to seven days a week to be with his daughter for the stated purpose.
“Nov 20 is a Saturday. He undertakes to return his passport on Nov 22, a Monday.
“This passport will be returned by an agent, perhaps via my assistance, as he will be under quarantine, so he himself could not return the passport,” Shafee explained.
When Shafee asked about Najib’s existing bail condition that he reports to the nearest police station twice a month, Kamaludin said that they themselves can inform the police station about what transpired before the Court of Appeal today.
In Najib’s affidavit in support of his application to release the passport, he said he was not a flight risk as his career, income, properties and his family were in Malaysia.
Najib said he had also posted RM5 million bail for the ongoing 1MDB corruption and money laundering trial and the 1MDB audit report trial for abuse of power.
Deputy public prosecutor Mohd Fairuz Johari confirmed that the prosecution had no objections to the application.
The other judges who presided were Datuk P Ravinthran and Datuk Abu Bakar Jais.
Najib was present during the proceedings.
Najib, 68, is awaiting the Court of Appeal’s decision on his appeal against his conviction, 12-year jail sentence and RM210 million fine after he was found guilty on seven charges of criminal breach of trust, money laundering and abuse of position involving RM42 million of SRC International Sdn Bhd funds.
After his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor applied for her passport to be temporarily released to be with Nooryana in Singapore, Najib had made a similar application.
This trip outside of Malaysia would be Najib’s first in three years since the Barisan Nasional government lost the 14th general election in 2018.
Najib’s passport was seized by authorities following his arrest and subsequent corruption charges related to the 1Malaysia Development Bhd scandal in 2018.
On Oct 15, the Kuala Lumpur High Court allowed Rosmah’s application to temporarily get back her international passport.
Judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan allowed Rosmah to travel to Singapore from Oct 22 and return on Nov 21.
She was ordered to return the document to the court before Dec 6.
Rosmah said she needed to be with their daughter Nooryana who suffered complications during the first delivery.
She said she wanted to be beside her daughter to provide mental and emotional support after delivery.
Rosmah, 69, is expected to resume giving evidence on Oct 21 over her charges of soliciting RM187.5 million and receiving bribes of RM6.5 million from Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd’s former managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin, through her former special officer Datuk Rizal Mansor.