Najib Defends Pardons Board's Decision & Challenges Haters To A Debate

Ramkarpal Singh, Tony Pua, and Hanipa Maidin were challenged to have a televised open debate over Najib's SRC RM42 million case.

Cover image via Berita Harian & Najib Razak (Facebook)

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Former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has defended the Pardons Board's decision to reduce his sentence and has challenged anyone who questions it to an open debate

According to a statement on Najib's official Facebook page yesterday, 4 February, members of parliament (MPs), such as Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh, were accused of having a lack of understanding regarding Najib's RM42 million SRC International trial.

This statement was released in response to Ramkarpal's Facebook post on 3 February, where the MP urged the Pardons Board to disclose the reasons for commuting Najib's sentence, emphasising that Najib committed the offences during his tenure as the head of the government "with utter disregard for the consequences of his actions to the nation and its people".

Najib's Facebook page said Ramkarpal had neglected to address the "numerous irregularities" in the case and brought up the only dissenting judge's quote in last year's Federal Court's dismissal of Najib's application to review his sentence that "a great injustice has fallen on Najib Razak and the correct decision is to acquit and release him".

Ramkarpal was then challenged to a televised open debate on the subject. As the case has come to an end, there is no longer any danger of contempt of court to discuss it publicly.

"We invite Ramkarpal Singh to a televised open debate with a representative from our side on the subject of whether or not Najib deserves a pardon for the SRC case," read the Facebook post.

Image via Utusan

Apart from Ramkarpal, the challenge to engage in an open debate was also issued to former ministers, Tony Pua and Hanipa Maidin

"Should Ramkarpal Singh decline, other recent haters such as Tony Pua and Hanipa Maidin can take his place," read Najib's Facebook post.

Senior DAP leader and former Damansara MP Tony Pua had openly criticised the commutation of Najib's sentence from 12 years to six when it was announced on Friday, 2 February.

Meanwhile, former Sepang MP Mohamed Hanipa Maidin published an article on Malaysiakini, calling the Pardons Board's decision to reduce Najib's sentence as "perplexing" and "mind-blogging".

Tony Pua (left) & Mohamed Hanipa Maidin (right)

Image via Malaysiakini & Berita Harian

Ramkarpal said he will not engage with Najib as the issue had already been decided

In a statement posted today, 5 February, the MP said that even though his sentence was commuted, the Pardons Board had maintained Najib's conviction.

"It is pointless engaging with Najib on this issue as it is elementary that the majority judgment of the said application prevails. Even the Pardons Board maintained his conviction.

"As such, any debate, whether with me or anyone else, would not change the fact that Najib remains a convict and that his conviction is safe," wrote Ramkarpal.

"It is obvious that Najib wishes to use me to remain relevant by challenging me to this debate. I will not allow myself to be used by this cheap publicity stunt of his," he added.

Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh.

Image via FMT

Read Najib's Facebook post here:

Read the news on Najib's reduced sentence here:

Pua is being investigated by the police for posting Facebook statuses that have been deemed seditious in nature:

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