Malaysia: Judge disqualifies himself from Najib vs Pua shariah bill-related suit- 24 May 2017

  • Judicial commissioner Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh, who was a deputy home minister before being made judge, has recused himself from hearing a defamation suit filed by Najib Razak.
  • He said this was because the public perception of the independence of the judiciary should not be shaken in any way.
  • In a statement, Wan Ahmad said it was common knowledge that he was an active politician, and at one time a member of former Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi’s administration and a Dewan Negara member.
  • In Jan 09, Wan Ahmad, an Umno leader, contested and lost in a by-election for the Kuala Terengganu parliamentary seat to a PAS candidate. He was appointed judicial commissioner on Dec 15.
  • In the meantime, he said, the case would go before a deputy registrar for case management on 31 May 17.
  • On 24 May 17, a hearing was scheduled on whether Najib’s application to stop Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua from uploading an offensive video in his Facebook account should be maintained pending the outcome of the prime minister’s defamation suit.
  • The recording was uploaded on Pua’s Facebook page “Tony Pua”, entitled “BN abandons all Bills to give precedence to PAS RUU355 Private Member’s Bill”. Najib said the live video was directed at him and done with malice and bad intention to defame him.

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