Malaysia's Najib may seek re-election despite conviction

Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has not ruled out seeking re-election to parliament within the next two years.

And that's despite a corruption conviction that would block him from running.

"It depends on interpretation in terms of the law, the Constitution and whatever happens in a court proceedings."

[Reporter asking:] "So you're not ruling it out?"

[Former Prime Minister Najib Razak:]"Not really not not not contesting? Any politician who would want to play a role would want to sit in parliament, you know, at least, your voice will be heard, or you can speak in parliament. So, I mean personally yes, I mean, any politician today who wants to play a part would want to contest again."

Najib's graft-tainted party, the United Malay's National Organization, clinched the premiership last month.

It had been ousted from power three years ago over the multi-billion dollar 1MDB scandal.

Malaysian and U.S. authorities say more than $4.5 billion was stolen from 1MDB, a new defunct state fund.

Some of the money went into Najib's bank accounts.

He was found guilty of corruption last year and sentenced to 12 years in jail - one of the many cases linked to 1MDB.

Najib has denied wrongdoing and appealed.

He is also calling for a royal commission of inquiry, or RCI, into his prosecution, which he says is politically motivated.

"What we want is the independence of the judiciary and agency that works on the basis of upholding justice."

Najib, who faces more than 40 charges mostly relating to 1MDB, remains a member of parliament.

But the constitution bars him from contesting elections unless he receives a pardon or reprieve from the country's monarch - or if he is successful in his appeal.

Najib says he has discussed a possible role for him in government with Malaysia's new Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

Media reports suggested he could be made an economic adviser.

But Najib declined to confirm if he would accept the position saying his priority is clearing his name.

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