Malaysia: Najib Razak, his wife banned from leaving country

Authorities issued travel ban moments after Najib said on Facebook he was taking a holiday overseas on Saturday.

    Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor said they wanted to go on holiday for a post-election break [File: Stephen Morrison/Reuters]
    Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor said they wanted to go on holiday for a post-election break [File: Stephen Morrison/Reuters]

    Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor have been blacklisted from leaving the country, immigration authorities said on Saturday.

    The statement by the Malaysian Immigration Department was issued moments after the scandal-plagued former prime minister said on Facebook that he and his family were taking a post-election holiday overseas starting from Saturday and would return next week.

    Najib said on his Twitter account he would respect the government ban on him leaving the country.

    "I have been informed that the Immigration Department does not allow me and my family to go abroad. I respect the direction and will remain with the family in the country," Najib wrote. 

    Later on Saturday, Najib announced he was quitting as head of the Barisan Nasional coalition and its main party after leading the coalition to a shock loss in Wednesday's parliamentary elections.

    "I have taken the decision to step down as president of UMNO and chairman of Barisan Nasional immediately," he told a press conference.

    The United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) is the main party in the coalition.

    Najib faces being investigated by the incoming government over a corruption scandal at Malaysia's state-owned investment fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), from which officials are alleged to have stolen more than $4.5bn.

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    Some of that money is alleged to have ended up in Najib's personal bank account.

    Najib has denied any wrongdoing and said the money was a donation from the Saudi royal family, which he had since returned.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies


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