7 Jan 2012

Opposition leader on tour prior to verdict

8:03 am on 7 January 2012

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim is halfway through a six day nationwide tour before a verdict on his long running sodomy trial.

The tour is taking him through eight states. Radio Australia reports it began in Johore on Tuesday and will end outside the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Monday when the verdict is expected.

Anwar was charged in 2008 with having sex with a male former aide. If found guilty, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

Anwar, 64, has already spent six years in prison on convictions of sodomy and corruption after a fallout with then-prime minister Mahathir Mohamad.

The conviction was eventually overturned and he was released in 2004.

Elections due in 2013, are expected to be called this year by Prime Minister Najib Razak.

If Anwar is convicted and sentenced to more than a year in prison, he will be barred from contesting elections for five years.