Former AG's conscience dictated Ahmad Zahid should get DNAA, says Anwar

KUALA LUMPUR: It was Tan Sri Idrus Harun's conscience which dictated that Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi should be given a discharge not amounting to acquittal (DNAA) before he retired, says Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The Prime Minister said he was informed by the former Attorney General of his decision to go ahead with the DNAA.

"He said he had to grant it due to certain reasons. I asked if it could be delayed? He said no. (He said it is) my duty, my conscience, I have to do it before I leave," Anwar told the Dewan Rakyat on Tuesday (Sept 19).

Anwar also refuted Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin's (PN-Larut) assertion that he had intervened by discussing it with Idrus.

"When the AG made the decision, I only asked about his reasons, (I did) not discuss it with him," he said, adding that Idrus only gave the 11 reasons that prompted the decision.

He also told Opposition MP's not to hurl accusations without proof.

"Where is the proof that I intervened?" he asked.

On Sept 4, when the DNAA was granted to the deputy prime minister, Deputy Public Prosecutor Datuk Ahmad Dusuki Mokhtar presented in court 11 reasons for the decision.

Following the decision, Anwar said the MACC said it would continue investigations and charges would be brought if there was additional evidence.

"It is as though I must order the AG to go ahead with the charges against the Deputy Prime Minister to be deemed a hero – but I cannot go against Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution," he said.

Article 145(3) stipulates the discretionary power of the AG with regards to instituting, conducting or discontinuing any proceedings for any offence.

Anwar cited several precedents including the case involving Karpal Singh in 1991, where the courts decided that the AG's discretionary powers cannot be questioned.

He also reminded the Opposition that Idrus was appointed by the Perikatan government, adding that he did not change the AG after coming to power.

He cited several other cases where a DNAA was granted after the prosecution had established a prima facie case, including one involving an Opposition politician.

Among others mentioned was the case involving Siti Aisyah and Doan Thi Huong, who were involved in the murder of Kim Jong Nam, where Siti Aisyah was given a DNAA by the Shah Alam High Court in March 2019.

A heated debate erupted in Parliament while Anwar (PH-Tambun) was providing an explanation on the DNAA granted to Ahmad Zahid for 47 charges in his graft case.

A number of Opposition MPs then staged a walkout to protest the Speaker's decision.

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