Untrue that I was first PM wife to use 'First Lady of Malaysia' title - Rosmah
Rosmah Mansor testified that several wives of previous prime ministers had used the title 'First Lady of Malaysia'.
During today's trial of her corruption case linked to Sarawak's solar hybrid energy project, the wife of former premier Najib Abdul Razak described the claim that she was the first to use the title as untrue and defamatory.
She was responding to the prosecution's grilling of her in past proceedings, whereby she then testified that she did not know whether her mother-in-law, Rahah Mohamed Noah, was the First Lady of Malaysia. Rahah was the wife of the late former premier, Abdul Razak Hussein, who was also Najib's father.
The prosecution had in previous proceedings brought witnesses to testify on the First Lady of Malaysia (FLOM) division being established in the Prime Minister's Department during Najib's tenure as premier.
The court previously heard that the division was tasked with planning and coordinating the official functions that needed to be attended by Rosmah, among other duties.
The prosecution had previously implied that Rosmah was the first wife of a then premier to label herself as First Lady of Malaysia.
During examination-in-chief by defence counsel Akberdin Abdul Kader, Rosmah testified that The Malaysian Branch Of The Royal Asiatic Society described Rahah, the late mother of Najib, as First Lady of Malaysia.
Rosmah also referred to several other publications that described Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali and Endon Mahmood Ambak, the wife and late wife of former premiers Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, as being described as First Ladies of Malaysia.
"When I heard (what the prosecution was alleging), I felt very angry and disappointed by the prosecutor's attitude, as I am not that type of person.
"When I did my research (on publications describing Rahah and several other wives of former premiers as First Lady of Malaysia), I found that what the prosecutors said was not true.
"This is (prosecutor's claim that Rosmah was first one to use the title) as untrue and defamatory. I do not know how someone could say this about another person," she testified.
At the juncture when she remarked that Rahah had passed away, she sobbed for a few seconds before continuing with her testimony.
Proceedings before trial judge Mohamed Zaini Mazlan continue today.
In relation to the trial before the Kuala Lumpur High Court, Rosmah, 70, is facing three charges under Section 16(a)(A) of the MACC Act 2009.
In the first charge, she is accused of soliciting RM187.5 million in bribes from Jepak Holdings Sdn Bhd to help secure an Education Ministry project.
The RM1.25 billion project was intended to supply power to 369 rural schools in Sarawak using a combination of solar and diesel energy.
In the second and third charges, she is accused of receiving RM1.5 million and RM5 million in bribes, respectively, as a reward for securing the project.
On Feb 18 this year, the High Court ordered Rosmah to enter her defence, following its finding that the prosecution succeeded in establishing a prima facie case against her.
Today is the third day of the defence stage of the trial.