PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Najib Razak and his deputy Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today failed to obtain an interim stay from filing their defence in response to ex-Umno leader Khairuddin Abu Hassan’s suit for breach of their oaths of office.
Lawyer Syed Iskandar Syed Jaafar Al Mahdzar, who appeared for Khairuddin, said High Court deputy registrar M Pavani refused the stay pending the outcome of the duo’s application to annul the suit.
“The deputy registrar informed us that she was in no position to grant the stay but will refer the matter to judge Ahmad Zaidee Ibrahim who is scheduled to hear the suit,” he said.
On Oct 12, Pavani ordered Najib and Zahid to file their defence by Oct 27 and their application to strike out the suit by Nov 10.
Lawyer Yazid Mustaqim Roslan appeared for Najib and Zahid during a case management today.
Syed Iskandar said Pavani also advised the disputing parties to explore the possibility of settling the case out of court.
“Both me and Yazid informed Pavani that we will inform our clients and obtain further instruction,” Syed Iskandar said.
The next case management is scheduled for Nov 15.
Meanwhile, Najib and Zahid have filed the application to strike out Khairuddin’s suit.
According to documents sighted by FMT, the two claimed that Khairuddin’s action did not reveal a reasonable cause of action.
“The application is frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the court process,” they said.
They also contended that the filing of their defence before the hearing of the striking out application would prejudice their legal rights.
They also questioned whether the court had the jurisdiction to determine the violations of oath according to the Sixth Schedule of the Federal Constitution.
Both also questioned whether Khairuddin has the legal standing to file the suit.
Khairuddin, an ardent critic of 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), in his statement of claim, said both leaders were unfit to be in the cabinet for misleading the public that RM2.6 billion in Najib’s account had come from an Arab donor.
He said Najib and Zahid had violated their oath of office, prescribed under the Sixth Schedule to preserve, to protect and defend the Federal Constitution.
The former Batu Kawan Umno division vice-chairman, who was sacked from the party in 2015, wants a declaration that Najib is unfit to hold the prime minister’s post or to be a member of the cabinet established under Article 43 of the constitution.
Khairuddin, also wants a similar declaration against Zahid, who is also home minister.
He said both became trustees of their office in public law and were, accordingly, under duty not to knowingly misrepresent facts or to mislead the citizens or to lie to them on material issues.
Khairuddin said sometime in March 2013, US$681 million (RM2.6 billion) was deposited in the private account of Najib, which he claimed belonged to 1MDB.
He said Najib had on several occasions publicly denied that the money belonged to 1MDB and instead declared that it had come from an Arab donor.
“In truth the monies came from a company called Tanore Corporation Finance which is controlled by Low Taek Jho or Jho Low,” Khairuddin added.
Khairuddin said Zahid, publicly as well as in the Dewan Rakyat, had declared that he had met the donor or donors of the US$681 million.-FMT NEWS-