Malaysia’s ex-finance minister views Two fresh graft charges

Lim Guan Eng was charged last month with three points of corruption connected to his tenure since Penang state chief minister from 2008-2018 until he became a finance minister. His attorney’s wife is accused of getting unlawful profits linked to some Penang job.

Lim stated two fresh charges against him Friday for misappropriating Penang state property value 208.7 million ringgit ($50.2 million) was a dire action timed before Sept. 26 elections in Sabah state.

“It is totally baseless and politically motivated, and timed to tarnish my image and smear my standing from the run-up into Sabah elections… and maybe impending general elections,” he told a news conference following the hearing.

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s new government is encouraged by graft-tainted parties that were defeated at the 2018 entire election.

Although national polls aren’t due till 2023, Muhyiddin is under pressure from allies within his Malay-centric authorities to call for snap elections because his coalition has just a lean two-seat majority in Parliament.

He’ll face his first test this month with elections at opposition-ruled Sabah state on Borneo island where the local authorities sought to thwart efforts by his coalition to take over by acquiring lawmakers to the flaw.

Friday’s fees against Lim are linked to some $1.5 billion undersea tunnel project intended in Penang. Lim was initially charged last month by soliciting 10 percent of possible gains as a bribe for the undertaking, and abusing power as Penang chief ministry to acquire 3.3 million ringgit ($793.746) as an inducement to aid a local firm to secure the building agency.

He had been accused of misuse of power to attain gratification because of his spouse associated with a workers’ dormitory job. His wife Betty Chew pleaded not guilty to getting 372,009 ringgit ($89,479) in unlawful profits linked to the identical project. She’s stated the cash was her lawful fees.

Lim accused that the anti-graft bureau of being an instrument of this new government to persecute the resistance and vowed to clear his name in court.