Malaysia's ousted leader Najib blacklisted from leaving country

Malaysia's ousted leader Najib blacklisted from leaving country

Malaysia's ousted leader Najib blacklisted from leaving country

Later yesterday, Najib - who has been under growing pressure from inside his Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition since the landslide loss - announced he was quitting as head of BN as well as its main party.

The swoop came as new Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, said he had stopped his predecessor from leaving the country because of suspected wrongdoing in connection with a multi-billion-dollar scandal at state fund 1MDB.

"If we found some of the complaints are valid, we have to act quickly because we don't want to settle with the problem of extradition from other countries". "I respect this instruction and will stay in the country with my family", he tweeted.

He added that Dr Mahathir would discuss the appointments with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, the jailed de facto leader of PKR who is due to be given a royal pardon by the King and released on Tuesday.

US authorities allege that at least $4.5 billion was misappropriated between 2009 and 2015, including $681 million allegedly received by Mr. Najib, whom lawsuits in the USA referred to as "Malaysian Official 1".

The announcement follows strong calls from the party for the scandal-plagued Najib Razak to step down over the disastrous election defeat to a four-party opposition alliance headed by veteran politician Mahathir Mohamad.

The resignation is to take up the responsibility for the defeat in the general elections, he said.

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Najib's statement on social media didn't say where he was heading said he was committed to "facilitating a smooth transfer of power".

"It is true that I prevented Najib from leaving the country. he and his wife", he told a press conference. "God willing, UMNO will continue to live".

It was a remarkable comeback for Mr Mahathir, who was premier for 22 years until his retirement in 2003 and is now the world's oldest leader at 92.

Amid the 1MDB scandal, Najib sacked critics in his government, including an attorney general and a deputy prime minister, and muzzled the media.

The lawmaker said a key reason for declaring the public holidays was so that Mahathir could announce key ministerial positions and name the new adviser before trading started on Monday in an effort to reassure global investors that his government was off to a solid start. Mr. Najib and 1MDB have denied wrongdoing, and Malaysian investigations carried out during Mr. Najib's premiership have cleared him. Earlier State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert congratulated the people of Malaysia on their participation in a "hard-fought" election campaign.

During a day of fast-moving events, Mahathir also named his first few cabinet ministers, including Lim Guan Eng, a former banker and qualified chartered accountant, as finance minister.

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