INTERVIEW | PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim has denied any controversy in the delay of his full royal pardon.
Speaking to Malaysiakini at his home in Segambut today, the day of his release, Anwar also revealed that he has been pardoned on the basis that his second sodomy conviction had been a "travesty of justice."
"Dr Mahathir Mohamad told me when he met me that it (the pardon) will be done. The meeting will be convened and the procedural papers will be satisfied by Tuesday, he said.
"But when it did not happen on Tuesday, Mahathir called Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and said it will be done on Wednesday.
"She was a little depressed, but Mahathir said, 'Look, it will be done'," Anwar related.
"I was there, and when I asked him whether it was true, he said yes,'it will be done tomorrow at 11am'," he added.
'Your sentence was a travesty of justice'
Anwar was pardoned of all his past records earlier this morning, and was granted an audience with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to receive it.
“(When I met the Agong today) he said to me that the Pardons Board meeting had gone well.
“And he said that ‘You can quote me tonight that I am not giving you a pardon because of my discretion as the Agong, I have the powers.
"'But I am doing it because it (your sentence) was a travesty of justice’,” Anwar said.
Wan Azizah declined being PM
Anwar also revealed that the Agong had previously offered the prime ministership to Wan Azizah, on the basis of her being the president of the political party which won the most seats in the 14th general election.
“Azizah immediately declined.
“Azizah said, ‘The only thing I want to ask from you (the Agong) now is to pardon my husband’,” he said.
With the pardon in place, the former Permatang Pauh MP is now free to re-join politics and contest in elections.
However, the 70-year-old indicated today that his official return to politics could be delayed as he intends to spend time with his family, as well as going to universities abroad to give lectures on Malaysia.
Anwar's release comes just a week after Pakatan Harapan's victory over BN, who were in power for over sixty years, and which also saw Mahathir returning to helm the country once again.
Almost two decades ago, during Mahathir's first tenure as the prime minister, Anwar was sacked as his deputy and was later jailed on a sodomy charge.
In 2015, he was jailed on a second sodomy charge, under the administration of former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak.
Anwar maintains that both sentences were politically motivated.