Utusan M'sia reports, then retracts, story that Najib received royal pardon

Malaysia's Pardons Board is expected to issue an official statement later in the day.

Tan Min-Wei | January 30, 2024, 04:58 PM



Rumors are circulating that former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak may have been issued a pardon by Malaysia's Pardons Board on Jan. 29, the day before Malaysia's outgoing Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King) stepped down.


The New Straits Times (NST), quoting Malay language paper Utusan Malaysia, reported sources had said that Najib had been issued a royal pardon on Jan. 29.

The Pardons Board is headed by the Agong.

But a short time later, Utusan retracted the story, saying that it could not verify the facts of its report. It also apologised to its readers.

The NST also reported that Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Zaliha Mustafa had said on Jan. 30 that the Pardons Board would be issuing a statement on Najib's application for a royal pardon, but did not provide additional details.

The supposed pardon was suggested to have occurred in the last official meeting held by outgoing Agong, Abdullah of Pahang.

New Agong

Abdullah is stepping down on Jan. 30 in line with Malaysia's rotating monarchy.

The role of Agong is to be taken up by Sultan Ibrahim of Johor the next day, on Jan. 31.

Najib was sentenced to 12 years' jail, as well as a RM210 million (S$65.33 Million) fine in July 2020, and was sent to Kajang Prison to serve out his term after his final appeal failed in August 2022.

However, depending on the scope of the as yet unconfirmed pardon, Najib's RM2.28 billion (S$436.5 million) 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) corruption trial is still ongoing.

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Top image from Najib Razak/Facebook