Malaysia's ex-premier Najib leaves anti-graft agency after 5 hours; will be back for questioning on Thursday

Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018.PHOTO: REUTERS
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018.
Datuk Seri Najib Razak arrives to give a statement to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Putrajaya, Malaysia on May 22, 2018. PHOTO: REUTERS

PUTRAJAYA - Former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak has left the headquarters of the anti-graft agency after being questioned for some five hours on Tuesday (May 22).

He told reporters that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) questioned him about SRC International Sdn Bhd, a former subsidiary of state fund 1MDB, and that he will return again on Thursday to give a statement about the issue.

Datuk Seri Najib was summoned by the MACC last Friday (May 18), raising questions whether he would be arrested on Tuesday. He entered the building before 10am and emerged after 3pm.

 

Malaysia’s anti-graft agency chief Mohd Shukri Abdull said on Tuesday that Mr Najib was summoned to provide a statement to the agency after new information surfaced in its probe of SRC.

“It’s to provide a statement, not to arrest him,” Datuk Seri Shukri told reporters at a press conference at 11.30am.

Mr Najib told reporters that the probe by a team of officers was conducted professionally and he was given a half-hour break during the session.

"'I have given a statement in 2015 on the issue of SRC. My statement today is an extension to that in more detail and to verify some documents," he said, adding that he is to come again to the MACC on Thursday. 

Earlier, Mr Najib showed up as scheduled on Tuesday morning at the MACC headquarters in Putrajaya.

More than 50 members of the media, both local and international, had assembled by 9am, an hour before Mr Najib was due to arrive.

The former prime minister arrived at MACC headquarters at 9.40am, in time for his 10am appointment with investigators. Had he not shown up, he could have been charged under the MACC Act.

Mr Najib's morning appearance came after a night of eleventh hour changes to his legal team.

Lawyer Harpal Singh Grewal told local media that he and his colleague M. Athimulan had not been fired but withdrew themselves from the team, which is now being led by former solicitor general Datuk Mohd Yusof Zainal Abidin.

Since Mr Najib's government was voted out of power on May 9, the new government led by Dr Mahathir Mohamad has opened investigations into how billions of dollars disappeared from the scandal-hit 1MDB.

 
 

Mr Najib has denied accusations of corruption and that he abused his power as prime minister and finance minister.