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Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Anwar's kin mulls new Agong's pardon, if review fails



Anwar Ibrahim's family may seek a royal pardon from the new Yang diPertuan Agong, Sultan Muhammad V, should the PKR de facto leader's bid to review his conviction be quashed tomorrow.

"It is one of the options, but we will have to discuss this with Anwar first.

"We're hoping (a favourable) outcome tomorrow would be the easier option," PKR president and Anwar's wife Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said when met by reporters at her house tonight.

Anwar's previous bid to get a royal pardon from then King, Sultan Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah, had been dismissed by the Pardons Board.

Lawyer Sivarasa Rasiah however clarified that there is no limit to attempts to seek a royal pardon.

The Federal Court will deliver its verdict on a review application by Anwar over the Sodomy II conviction tomorrow.

This is Anwar’s last legal avenue to challenge the five-year jail sentence handed down by the Federal Court, which upheld the Court of Appeal’s decision to overturn his acquittal.

If Anwar succeeds in his bid, the apex court will decide whether to acquit the PKR leader or order a retrial at the High Court.

If the conviction stands, he would remain in jail until mid-2018.

Earlier, Wan Azizah told a crowd gathered at her home that when she was at the new Agong's crowning ceremony, it had crossed her heart that a royal pardon would guarantee Anwar's freedom.

"Maybe the new Agong will have a new way (of doing things)," she said.

She said Anwar was previously hesitant to seek a pardon as it would be seen as an admission of guilt.

However he changed his mind when the pardon was made on the grounds of miscarriage of justice.

Over 50 people, mostly PKR members, had gathered at Anwar's home in Sentul tonight for a solat hajat (special prayers), to pray for his release tomorrow.- Mkini

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