11 hours ago
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) — Three members of Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s party have been arrested for graft, triggering accusations of “dirty tricks” Thursday ahead of a tense by-election.
Anwar, who was sacked as deputy premier and jailed a decade ago, has accused the ruling coalition of trying to undermine his chances of returning to parliament in an August 26 ballot in his home state of Penang.
Anti-corruption officials on Wednesday detained two members of the state cabinet in northern Perak which is run by Anwar’s opposition alliance, as well as another official in his Keadilan party.
They were among a group of six people accused of taking bribes of more than 120,000 ringgit (36,000 dollars) from a businessman to expedite a local housing project, the New Straits Times reported.
“None of them resisted when the team barged into the hotel room,” state anti-corruption chief Samsiah Abu Bakar told the daily after the raid. “We also found 100,000 ringgit in a bag belonging to one of the suspects,” she added. [more]
International Herald Tribune
The Associated Press
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia: Malaysia’s anti-corruption watchdog arrested two state lawmakers from opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s party for alleged bribery Wednesday, complicating Anwar’s bid to re-enter Parliament.
Opposition groups voiced concerns that the arrests were meant to undermine public support for Anwar ahead of next week’s parliamentary by-election. Anwar has persistently accused Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s administration of rampant corruption and has pledged to seize power by mid-September.
The government’s Anti-Corruption Agency said it detained two legislators and four other suspects in northern Perak state for alleged crimes in connection to a 180 million ringgit (US$56 million) housing project and a sex case.
One of the legislators was “caught shortly after receiving a bribe of over 123,400 ringgit (US$38,500) to speed up the processing of a housing project,” the agency said in a statement. It did not elaborate on the alleged sex case.
An agency official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make public statements, said the legislators were from Anwar’s People’s Justice Party, but he denied the crackdown was politically motivated.
The arrests could be a potential embarrassment for Anwar, who is already fighting a sodomy charge that he claims was concocted by the government to tarnish his reputation. The government has denied the allegations. [more]
Posted in ACA, Arrest, corruption, Elections, Ethics, Pakatan Rakyat, Politics
Tagged Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Anti-Corruption Agency, Anwar Ibrahim, By-Election, corruption, Parti Keadilan Rakyat