Defence alleges Mahdzir has gambling habit in Rosmah's corruption trial

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 11 Feb 2020

KUALA LUMPUR: Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor's defence team alleges that Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid (pic) wanted a bribe for himself from the solar hybrid project to fund his gambling addiction, the High Court heard on Tuesday (Feb 11).

The defence also accused the former education minister of stabbing former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife in their backs to escape from being charged with corruption himself, on day four of Rosmah's corruption trial.

Defence counsel Datuk Jagjit Singh, during cross-examination, claimed that Mahdzir often travelled on a private jet to Macau, Singapore and Perth to gamble.

Jagjit: When you travelled to Alor Setar, you travelled by private jet?

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: You travelled by private jets during campaign periods?

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: Did you also use private jets for your gambling trips to Macau, Singapore and Perth?

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: What if I get the travel records from the private jet company?

Mahdzir: Okay.

Jagjit: You don't gamble at all? You need all this money to feed your gambling habits.

Mahdzir: I disagree.

The court also heard that Mahdzir wanted Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin to appoint a man named Haji Puad from Kedah as a consultant for the solar hybrid project as he would act as a conduit for him to receive corrupt money.

Jagjit: I put it to you that you had demanded 20% of the project cost from Saidi and he disagreed.

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: After discussion with Saidi, he agreed to pay you RM1mil per month for a period of five years which makes this a total of RM60mil.

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: After Saidi agreed to pay the RM1mil per month for five years, you, in your minutes (on the project), noted down to "expedite the papers for the Finance Ministry immediately".

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: You initially asked 20% which will amount to RM250mil but they disagreed and reduced the amount to RM1mil per month for five years.

Mahdzir: I disagree.

Jagjit: This makes you the most corrupt Education Minister since Aug 31,1957.

Jagjit said Mahdzir was hesitant to expedite the solar hybrid project after he suspected that Saidi would not honour the commitment to pay him RM1mil per month for five years.

He said that Mahdzir suspected this when the consultancy agreement which was supposed to be drafted under Haji Puad was instead prepared under Jepak Kuching Sdn Bhd, which was a dormant company.

Jagjit also said Mahdzir had appointed a lawyer to broker a deal with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) after he was told by them that he would soon be charged with corruption.

Jagjit also accused Rosmah's aide, Datuk Rizal Mansor, of being a conduit in the whole solar hybrid project as he too demanded 10% of the entire contract sum of RM1.25bil.

Jagjit said that in "Team Saidi", the leader was, in fact, Mahdzir, himself as he had wanted to appoint "Haji Puad" as the consultant for the project.

Mahdzir, however, disagreed.

Jagjit also questioned why Mahdzir did not personally contact Rosmah to clarify issues when Rizal kept dropping names.

To this, Mahdzir said that it was because he believed in Rizal as he was an aide to Rosmah.

Jagjit, however, claimed that the reason was because he was "corrupt" that's was why he was afraid to check with her.

"You are lying to this court, the evidence is to try to get a deal with the MACC and the prosecution to leave the court free of charges," he said, to which Mahdzir disagreed.

Jagjit then also accused Mahdzir of turning against Najib and Rosmah to avoid prosecution.

"I put it to you that Datuk Viknesh (a lawyer) struck a deal with the Attorney General and prosecution not to charge you and that you would be a star witness to implicate Najib and his wife.

"You would sing any song the prosecution wants," he said, even calling Mahdzir "Brutus".

The trial continues Wednesday (Feb 11) before High Court Judge Justice Mohamed Zaini Mazlan.

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