Sorry Bro – There’s No Provision For Prisoner Najib To Attend Parliament, Even If He’s Still An MP

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Oct 06 2022
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Muhammad Shafee Abdullah, the so-called hotshot lawyer of former Prime  Minister Najib Razak, is squirming like a worm in a silly effort to allow his client to attend parliamentary sessions. Actually, Mr Shafee needs to do only one thing – quote a law that allows a prisoner attends the Parliament. He can’t because there’s no provision to grant Najib the permission to do so.


After the “Merpati” (pigeon), a code-name given by a whistleblower to Najib as the prisoner of Kajang Prison, failed in his leaked attempt to serve 12-year jail time in the VVIP ward of the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital, the crook and his lawyer have hatched another plan to enjoy special treatment. The evil plan is to leverage on Najib’s Member of Parliament status to extract privileges.


Initially, Shafee argued that the imprisoned Najib could technically attend the parliamentary meeting as he is still the Pekan MP. The disgraced former premier is serving a 12-year sentence after 3 courts and 9 judges (High Court – 1, Court of Appeal – 3, Federal Court – 5) all unanimously convicted him in the RM42 million SRC International corruption case.

Najib Razak Sent To Prison - Newspaper Headlines

Even though Najib cannot contest in the next 15th General Election, he will remain a Member of Parliament pending a decision on his application for a royal pardon. However, when the question whether he can still attend Parliament was raised, Speaker Azhar Azizan Harun said it was not in his power to decide, passing the ball to the Prisons Department, which is under the Home Ministry’s jurisdiction.


Prisons Department, in hot water after it was leaked that Najib was quietly smuggled from the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital to the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital, has promptly rejected Najib’s request to attend Parliament sittings. Apparently, Home Minister Hamzah Zainuddin and Prisons Department Director-General Nordin Muhamad were summoned to see Najib in his cell on Aug 24 (the very next day Najib was imprisoned).


It was leaked that the Prisons Department agreed to spend a jaw-dropping RM50,000 to renovate Najib’s prison cell so that he can live like the “Big Boss”, in line with his “Bossku” moniker, even while serving his 12 years behind bars. Short of a golden toilet bowl, one can expect everything, including internet access and accommodation like a 5-star hotel room, to be accorded for Najib.

Kajang Prison - Penjara Kajang

Upset, attorney Shafee went ballistic after his client’s request to attend Parliament sessions was turned down due to “security reason”. He disagreed with the Prisons Department’s decision, arguing that Parliament is a lot safer than court. And if Najib is safe enough to go to court to attend his ongoing corruption trials, logically the Parliament should also be safe for him.


Mr Shafee has claimed that Najib’s request should be approved under Section 31 of the Prison Act, which says the Director-General of Prisons Department may take a prisoner to any place in Malaysia – if “satisfied that there are reasonable grounds requiring the presence of a prisoner” or if the “presence of a prisoner is required for the purpose of any public inquiry”.


Clearly, attorney Shafee, who is facing RM9.5 million corruption case himself, has chosen – either deliberately or ignorantly – to misinterpret the Section 31. First, it’s within the power of the prison chief to either grant or reject a prisoner’s request to go to any place. Second, it didn’t mention the provision is for MPs. Third, there must be a strong reason to justify the presence of Najib in the Parliament.

Shafee Abdullah – Arrested By MACC Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission

Essentially, even if Najib has an incredible strong reason to attend parliamentary sessions, which he doesn’t, the prison director-general can still throw away his application due to whatever reasons that the prison department has. It could be due to security reason, lack of manpower, or simply because the prison authorities don’t think the parliament requires the presence of Najib.


In short, Najib is at the mercy of the Prisons Department. If Najib is allowed to attend the Parliament sessions just because he is still an MP, does that mean another prisoner should also be escorted to chair his company meetings because he is still the CEO or Chairman? There’s no law that says a Member of Parliament commands special privilege, but not a company Chief Executive Officer.


Besides, the Parliament of Malaysia comprises 222 MPs, where Najib is just one of them. As an ordinary MP, he is dispensable as the country is still functional without him. Therefore, the Prisons Department may justify that there is no reasonable grounds requiring his presence in the August House. Perhaps Najib has forgotten that he is not the prime minister anymore.

Malaysia Parliament Building

Najib’s self-proclaimed hotshot lawyer should also realize that the ex-premier is still a Member of Parliament primarily due to his application for a royal pardon – not because he is still innocent until proven guilty. He had already been convicted – thrice – and sent to jail. Najib is more a prisoner than an MP. He is the Kajang Prison Complex’s newest inmate – a confirmed prisoner.


Prisoners are deprived of their freedom and liberty, largely as a form of punishment and partly to protect the society from a crook like Najib Razak. Malaysia would become a laughing stock if prisoner Najib is allowed to attend the Parliament because no such shameless thing had ever happened anywhere in the world. The August House would become a pariah.


The Section 31 of the Prison Act also stated that a prisoner taken from the prison, whilst outside that prison, must be kept in custody. Is Najib willing to be dressed in the iconic orange uniforms or handcuffed while attending the parliamentary sessions? If not, it would violate the basic rules that prisoners must be kept behind bars, not to mention unexpected consequences of letting a prisoner in parliament.

Najib Razak Behind Bars - Prison Jail

Who will guarantee the safety of other MPs if Najib decides to stage a sudden daring escape drama by holding them hostage? Based on his addiction to Starbucks and inability to serve prison time, the authorities have every reason to believe that Najib is a very dangerous prisoner, who could pose a security threat to every member or employee of the Lower House of Representative.


Hilariously, Shafee also said Najib should be allowed to meet his political aide for matters related to his Pekan constituency and to be escorted from prison “once in a while” to visit Pekan to serve voters there as their MP. They are obviously on a fishing expedition to bait for special freedom for the crook. Again, unfortunately, there is no provision for such silly request.


If a prisoner can be allowed to visit his constituency because he is still an MP, other prisoners similarly should be escorted from prison “once in a while” to visit his family members in hometown because he is still a father or a mother. And if convicted MPs are allowed to attend the Parliament, should not such privilege be extended to convicted State Assembly Representatives as well?

Nelson Mandela in Prison - Jail

His constituency is being well taken care of. Didn’t his son, Nizar Najib, shamelessly told the people of Pekan that Najib will persevere through his imprisonment in the same way Nelson Mandela did during his time in prison? Didn’t Nizar also said that daddy’s imprisonment was God’s way of bringing the former premier to a “higher level”, and that Najib would emerge “better” after getting released from jail?


What type of Najib Mandela is if he keeps breaking out of jail? Mandela was imprisoned because he fought against the South African system of racial supremacy known as “apartheid”. Najib is imprisoned because he had stolen money using Malaysia racial supremacy system called the NEP (New Economic Policy) derived from “Ketuanan Melayu”, the ideology of Malay supremacy espoused by UMNO.


Exactly how could the God upgrade Najib to a higher level if he does not complete his jail sentence, as it was the God’s decision in the first place to send him to the Kajang Prison? Najib’s lawyer should remember that his client had taken dozens of Islamic oath swearing in mosque to claim innocence. It was Najib who said if he lies in the mosque, Allah may punish him, which the God gladly did.

1MDB Scandal - Money Trail From SRC Into Ex-PM Najib Razak Accounts - April 30, 2019

The latest attempt seeking a judicial review of the Prison Department’s rejection of Najib’s request to attend parliamentary sessions is not only a waste of time, but could backfire. The attempt to delay his ongoing 1MDB trial due to clashes of dates would create an impression that Najib is – again – guilty as hell, and could lead to hostility with the Prison Department and Home Ministry.


The ex-premier is rotting in jail because lead counsel Shafee had chicken out from arguing his case in the Federal Court, despite initial boastful confidence when they submitted a whopping 94 grounds in the Petition of Appeal on why the former PM should be freed of the charges of misappropriating RM42 million from SRC International. Now, he wants a declaration that Najib is entitled to attend Parliament.


Najib should sack his incompetent attorney for worsening his case. Even before he was imprisoned, it’s not compulsory for Najib to attend Parliament. That’s why the embarrassing incident of MPs skipping the session keeps happening. There’s a difference between entitlement to Parliament and attending its proceedings. Just because Najib is entitled does not mean he must attend.

Najib Razak - 1MDB Scandal - Corruption and Money Laundering - Worried Face

Members of Parliament are not obliged by parliamentary rules to attend the House at any time. Despicable Speaker Azhar Harun was wrong to rule that Najib can attend based on the assumption that he is an MP. If that’s true, can the Speaker explain why 11 Opposition DAP MPs were barred from attending Parliament when detained under the now-defunct Internal Security Act during Operation Lalang in 1987?


Shafee should stop proving that he’s nothing but an overrated useless UMNO lawyer. There isn’t any provision to grant MPs any permission to participate in parliamentary meetings. If they are imprisoned, they cannot participate. In fact, the Home Ministry and the Prisons Department could be sued for breaking the law if they approve Najib’s request to attend the Dewan Rakyat sitting.


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