A PKR MP has welcomed recent warnings by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong at an event at UiTM about the “cancer” of corruption, but says the monarch’s strong stand appears to be inconsistent with the palace’s act of inviting former leader Najib Razak despite the latter’s conviction of corruption.
Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Karim said he was not blaming the Agong for the invitations, adding that there appeared to be a failure by those tasked with advising the palace in discharging their duties.
“The government and the state have provided the Yang di-Pertuan Agong with various palace advisers and assistants. These palace officials carry great titles such as Datuk Bijaya Diraja, Datuk Bentara Diraja and others.
“The Yang di-Pertuan Agong also has access to the attorney-general who acts as a lawyer for the government. Is there no one who dares to come forward to advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong not to invite former prime minister Najib Razak (a corruption offender) to Istana Negara?” Hassan wrote on his Facebook page.
Najib, the Pekan MP, was convicted by the High Court in July 2020 of seven charges related to the misappropriation of RM42 million in SRC International funds.
He was sentenced to 12 years in jail and fined RM210 million in a judgment upheld by the Court of Appeal in December last year. He is currently appealing his case at the Federal Court.
He was invited to an Aidilfitri event at Istana Abdulaziz in Kuantan, Pahang, on May 4, and also attended a breaking of fast event with the king, members of the Cabinet and foreign diplomats at Istana Negara on April 18.
Hassan said it was a mistake on the part of the palace to extend invitations to Najib where he would join the Agong for meals.
He said the UiTM undergraduates who had heard the Agong’s strong remarks against corruption would also have seen pictures shared on social media of Najib being welcomed at the palace.
He added that Najib’s close friendship with the Agong should not be an issue.
“They are both from Pahang. But that’s on a personal level. It cannot be mixed with official matters.
“Najib Razak as a former prime minister and senior politician should have realised and taken the initiave to advise the Yang di-Pertuan Agong not to invite him to the palace, based on his conviction by the court.”