By S. Harrish
DATIN Seri Rosmah Mansor did not personally solicit and accept bribes for the Sarawak schools solar power project, argued her defense lawyers.
Therefore, they said she should be acquitted as the prosecution had failed to prove their case.
Rosmah is accused of soliciting RM187.5 million from then Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd managing director Saidi Abang Samsudin through Datuk Rizal Mansor as an inducement to help Jepak Holdings secure the RM1.25 bil project for 369 rural schools in Sarawak, through direct negotiation with the education ministry.
She is also charged with two counts of receiving bribes amounting to RM6.5 million – RM1.5 million from Saidi at her private residence at Langgak Duta here on Sept 7, 2017, and another RM5 million from Saidi through Rizal at Seri Perdana in Putrajaya on Dec 20, 2016.
According to the FMT, in a 212-page submission by her lawyers, they said it was Saidi who intended and offered the money as political donation to Rosmah, wife of Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
“The political donation was meant for Najib as a ‘gesture of gratitude’ for supporting their application by Jepak to secure the solar project and ensure Barisan Nasional’s victory in the 14th general election,” they said in the submission filed at the High Court on Monday, sighted by FMT.
The lawyers said there was no evidence to show that Rosmah solicited any percentage of the contract value.
The submission said Rizal, a former aide to Rosmah who turned prosecution witness after corruption charges against him were dropped, was using the accused’s name to solicit and receive bribes.
Her lawyers said Rosmah did not receive the RM1.5 million from Saidi as she was never shown nor handed over the amount.
They also said the prosecution failed to prove that the alleged two black bags with orange stripes containing the RM1.5 million were personally handed over to Rosmah.
“Saidi never handed over the bags personally to the accused. He never said he put the cash on the table in front of her. He never opened, showed the bags and counted the notes in front of the accused,” they said.
Further, they said, there was no evidence to prove that Rosmah received the other RM5 million in two luggage bags from Rizal at Seri Perdana through two butlers.
“Even Saidi and Rayyan had expressed doubt whether Rizal had handed over the money to the accused,” they said, according to the FMT report.
The defence also said the prosecution failed to show credible and independent evidence that Rosmah solicited and received any of the corrupt money.
The trio, they added, orchestrated and carried out the plan to get the said solar project by “deceiving and using” Rosmah.