KUCHING: Under the Malaysian law, a person is innocent until proven guilty and that goes for former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak too, said Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing.

Masing said he is puzzled why there are leaders who are worried of Najib’s popularity now.

Najib, he said, can do whatever he pleases within the ambit of Malaysian laws. Why should Pakatan Harapan (PH), or for that matter Malaysian authorities, be so worried about his growing popularity?

He said although Najib may be facing many criminal and civil charges, he is still innocent for now.

Masing added that there is nothing new about that in Malaysia.

“Lim Guan Eng was appointed as a minister in Pakatan Harapan government while being charged for corruption in Malaysian court.

“Even worse, Lim was discharged before the court case was completed so he could assume his ministerial appointment.

“This is the case of ‘Malaysia Boleh’. Everyone should not be to hypocritical or playing double standard in our ethical or moral values in judging our fellow Malaysian,” he added.

Lawyer Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan had said recently that Najib’s efforts to remain politically relevant have been working and that it is “worrisome”.

She had said that what Najib was trying to achieve, given the number of criminal charges he faced, would properly be unheard of in other countries.

Barisan Nasional lost power in the 14th General Election and since then, Najib has taken to social media to voice his disagreement over policies of PH.

He has also garnered a reasonably huge audience on his Facebook page.