Sunday, 21 October, 2018

Jailed Malaysian leader Anwar Ibrahim walks free

Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the media in Kuala Lumpur Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the media in Kuala Lumpur Thomson Reuters
Patty Aguilar | 16 May, 2018, 07:15

On Friday, Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V had expressed his willingness to grant an immediate pardon to Anwar.

Malaysia's jailed reformist Anwar Ibrahim will likely be freed by noon on Wednesday (May 16) after the Pardons Board in Kuala Lumpur meet on the same day to discuss his release.

Anwar emerged from the Cheras Rehabilitation Hospital on Wednesday after Malaysia's Pardon Board, which included the current King, chose to overturn the 2015 conviction, which is widely accepted to be politically motivated.

Surrounded by media and supporters, Anwar walked out of a hospital Wednesday where he was recovering from surgery.

She said her husband's health was improving.

"So, we expect (the release) will be at noon tomorrow before a gathering in the afternoon in Petaling Jaya", he told reporters after visiting Mr Anwar at the hospital on Tuesday (May 15).

Mahathir, 92, who put Anwar in jail in 1998, promised to help release his former protege during the campaign.

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"You will have to give time to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, and for the cabinet to be formed and the government to be working and running well".

Anwar sought a royal pardon on the grounds of "miscarriage of justice", which would reverse his conviction and make him eligible to actively participate in politics.

When asked whether Anwar should take over as prime minister, Izzah said she believed the country deserved the best prime minister.

He was scheduled to be released from the Sungai Buloh prison on June 8 on good behaviour.

He also pledged to serve the premiership for around two years before handing it over to Anwar.

The 70-year-old Anwar was convicted of sodomy in 2015 in a case he said was aimed at crushing his alliance after making gains against Malaysia's long-ruling coalition government.

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