Najib’s SRC case review to proceed as planned, says CJ Tengku Maimun

PUTRAJAYA: The review application filed by Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the Federal Court would proceed as planned, as the judges presiding over the matter have been prepared, says the Chief Justice.

CJ Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat said recent vacancies at the Federal Court level would not affect the hearing, which has been fixed for three days on Jan 19, 20 and 26.

ALSO READ: Najib's bid for SRC conviction review to be heard from Jan 19

The dates have been fixed since Oct 21, last year.

"The review's hearing dates have been fixed and we have the panel of judges ready for the matter," she told a press conference after the Opening of the Legal Year (OLY) 2023 here on Monday (Jan 9).

The CJ was asked by a reporter whether there were enough judges to preside over the case as there have been vacancies after the mandatory retirement of several judges.

On Jan 5, it was reported that Najib's lead counsel Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had indicated uncertainty over whether the SRC International review hearing would proceed next week.

ALSO READ: Najib files for review into SRC International trial

Muhammad Shafee reportedly said that there were only six judges left who were not part of the original five Federal Court judges - including the CJ - and that Najib had asked for a new panel of seven judges to hear the review.

On Aug 23, last year, the Federal Court upheld the Kuala Lumpur High Court’s decision to convict Najib to 12 years in jail and a RM210mil fine in the RM42mil SRC case.

On Sept 6, he applied for a review of the Federal Court’s decision, claiming a “miscarriage of justice” in his case.

On the appointment of judges to fill in the vacancies, Tengku Maimun said the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) has done its part in forwarding the names to the Prime Minister's Office.

"I believe we will be seeing the elevation of judges soon," she added.

Earlier, at the beginning of her speech at OLY, Tengku Maimun noted that two top judges - former Court of Appeal president Justice Tan Sri Rohana Yusuf and former Chief Judge of Malaya Justice Tan Sri Azahar Mohamed - have recently retired.

She thanked both Rohana and Azahar for their service in the judiciary.

"I myself am set to retire in 2025. It means I have served half of my tenure," said the CJ.

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