Two prominent Opposition leaders savoured freedom today – Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal, who was released from an eight-day MACC remand, and PKR’s Batu MP Tian Chua, who walked out of prison after serving his month-long jail term.
Updated: Shafie will not be attending the tabling of Budget 2018 today. He had complained of fatigue and wished only to go home and rest for now.
Shafie was remanded in relation to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s (MACC) investigation into the alleged embezzlement of RM1.5 billion federal funds under his former ministry.
Shafie arrived at the court in Kota Kinabalu at around 9.30am and was immediately brought to the chambers of Magistrate Cindy McJuce Balitus before emerging 20 minutes later.
He was greeted by his party leaders, including vice-presidents Junz Wong, Jaujan Sambakong and Peter Anthony.
A crowd of about 400 party supporters gathered to show support for their leader.
Shafie was released on RM100,000 bail with RM80,000 to be deposited with two local sureties.
He was also ordered to report to the MACC office once a month.
When asked by reporters if he intended to attend Parliament, he nodded but said he will go for a medical check-up first.
It is unclear if he will be able to make it for the tabling of the 2018 Budget which is scheduled for 3.30pm today.
Shafie was the last of 13 people to be detained over the RM1.5 billion probe. All have been released.
More than 45 people have been questioned since the probe began.
Meanwhile, in Petaling Jaya, Tian Chua walked out of the Kajang Prison at around 9am and was greeted by supporters.
He said he was roused from his sleep by prison officials at 5am before being officially released at 7am.
Among those who welcomed his released outside the prison were PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali.
Tian Chua was jailed after he withdrew his appeal before the Court of Appeal on Sept 29. This was in relation to a charge of refusing a police order to leave the restricted Police Training Centre (Pulapol) area following the Bersih 3 rally in 2012.
He had appealed against the Kuala Lumpur High Court’s decision to uphold the Sessions’ Court sentence of one month’s jail and a fine of RM1,000.