The country would see better progress without current attorney-general Mohamed Apandi Ali, claimed former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
“We could make better progress without this attorney-general…,” he told journalists after a forum in Shah Alam tonight.
He was responding to a question about Swiss authorities expressing confidence that they can progress with the probe into 1MDB without Malaysia’s help.
The Swiss authorities had written to Malaysia’s Attorney-General’s Chambers for Mutual Legal Assistance on the 1MDB case last year but had not received favourable response.
Mahathir believed that the matter should have gone to court.
“He (Apandi) shouldn’t have assumed to be a judge, he should have let the judges do the judging,” said Mahathir.
Mahathir said it would be “dictatorial” for an attorney-general to make pronouncements that cannot be disputed.
Several parties, including the Bar Council, had tried to challenge Apandi’s refusal to prosecute in the case.
However, the Court of Appeal on Tuesday dismissed the appeal.
Apandi in January last year cleared Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak of any wrongdoing over the multi-billion ringgit deposits in his personal bank accounts.
He also declined to prosecute after Bank Negara submitted its investigation papers against 1MDB.
US and Swiss authorities believe that at least US$4 billion of 1MDB funds were misappropriated.
The US Department of Justice claimed that at least US$731 million of this money went to one “Malaysian Official 1”, which Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Abdul Rahman Dahlan confirmed was the prime minister.
Foreign investigators are looking into the matter as the funds were laundered through the respective countries’ financial system.
Najib had denied wrongdoing or taking public funds for personal gain.
He claimed the multi-billion ringgit deposits in his personal bank accounts were a “donation” from a member of the Saudi Arabia royal family.
According to Reuters, Swiss attorney-general Michael Lauber expressed confidence that his money laundering probe into 1MDB fund would bear fruit despite Malaysian authorities’ refusal to cooperate.