Najib's wife had considerable influence because of overbearing nature, Latest World News - The New Paper

Najib's wife had considerable influence because of overbearing nature

This article is more than 12 months old

KUALA LUMPUR Despite not holding any official position, former prime minister Najib Razak's wife's "overbearing nature" ensured her influence in the previous administration, said the prosecution.

Rosmah Mansor went on trial at the Kuala Lumpur High Court yesterday for corruption, AFP reported.

"By herself, she occupied no official position. However, she wielded considerable influence by reason of her overbearing nature. She placed herself in a position where she was able to influence decisions in the public sector," prosecution lawyer Gopal Sri Ram said.

He said the prosecution will provide both direct and circumstantial evidence to show Rosmah asked for and received bribes and she had played an "active role" to help a company get a project in return for the bribes, the Malay Mail reported.

Prosecutors allege she pocketed RM6.5 million (S$2.2 million) for helping a company secure the project to provide solar power generators to schools. She is also accused of soliciting a further RM187.5 million. Rosmah faces three counts of corruption for the offences, which allegedly took place in 2016 and 2017.

Known for her imperious manner, she denied all the charges, AFP reported.

The trial was supposed to start on Monday but was delayed after Rosmah was admitted to hospital for neck pain. Yesterday, she arrived in a car followed by an ambulance and limped into the courtroom.

Najib, who is on trial at the High Court over the looting of 1Malaysia Development Berhad, made an appearance in the courtroom, AFP reported.

After the 2018 election, police discovered valuables - including cash, jewellery and luxury handbags - worth up to US$273 million (S$377 million) in properties linked to the couple.