Najib's supporters raise funds to help him pay bail

Former prime minister Najib Razak's supporters gathered outside his mansion in Taman Duta in Kuala Lumpur yesterday to launch a "Free Najib" donation drive. The fund collection is organised by a group calling itself Solidariti Bersama Datuk Najib.
Former prime minister Najib Razak's supporters gathered outside his mansion in Taman Duta in Kuala Lumpur yesterday to launch a "Free Najib" donation drive. The fund collection is organised by a group calling itself Solidariti Bersama Datuk Najib.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

Ex-PM's daughter claims her bank account and that of her young son have been frozen

KUALA LUMPUR • Supporters of former prime minister Najib Razak yesterday launched a donation drive which they say will help him pay for his court bail.

After being charged in the High Court on Wednesday, he paid half of the RM1 million (S$337,300) bail, and has been given until Monday to pay the other half.

The fund collection is organised by a group calling itself Solidariti Bersama Datuk Najib (Solidarity with Datuk Najib).

"We want to give moral and financial support to Datuk Seri Najib," said the fund's spokesman Mohd Razlan Muhammad Rafii, who was the former Umno Youth wing chief of the Federal Territories.

He told The Star: "We know that he has been charged and his bail has been set at RM1 million. However, Najib can only pay RM500,000 and to fund the balance, he has to surrender his house title deed as security. We therefore want to offer our moral and financial support to him."

Some of Najib's supporters gathered at his mansion in Taman Duta yesterday to launch the "Free Najib" fund, which has so far collected RM11,000.

On Wednesday, the former prime minister was charged with three counts of criminal breach of trust and one of abuse of power involving RM42 million linked to SRC International, a former subsidiary of state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). He pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The bail was set at RM1 million with two sureties. The court also agreed for the bail payment to be in two instalments.

It is not known how much Najib will be paying in legal fees, with lawyers saying that the case will likely last 18 to 24 months, and can be longer if there are interlocutory applications in between.

He has hired top local lawyer Shafee Abdullah to lead a seven-person defence team.

Meanwhile, Najib's daughter Nooryana Najwa has claimed that her personal bank account was frozen after she posted bail for her father.

"Immediately after I posted bail for my dad yesterday (Wednesday) with funds collected from friends and relatives, my bank said they had instructions to freeze my personal account which I use to pay for my own school fees," she wrote in Facebook yesterday.

Ms Nooryana claimed that her 10-month-old son's bank account was also frozen. The authorities denied the boy's account was frozen.

A news report said the bank account of Najib's son Norashman was also frozen.

In May, police raided six residences linked to Najib as part of its investigations into 1MDB, seizing cash and items valued at between RM900 million and RM1.1 billion. The cash seized, in 26 different currencies, amounted to RM114 million.

Separately, Najib's wife told her supporters not to shed tears over his corruption suit.

"Don't ever cry. I don't want anybody to cry," Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor said on Wednesday at the court where Najib was charged.

In another development linked to the 1MDB case, the Malaysian police chief said that financier Low Taek Jho, who is wanted for questioning in connection with the case, was last known to be in Macau.

Inspector-General of Police Mohamad Fuzi Harun told reporters yesterday: "The latest we know is that he was in Macau. In fact, the other day we sent our team to Hong Kong but immediately when we arrived, he left for Macau."

When queried, Hong Kong police said they had no comment on the matter.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 06, 2018, with the headline 'Najib's supporters raise funds to help him pay bail'. Print Edition | Subscribe