KUCHING, Sept 4: State Reform Party (STAR) president Lina Soo described the acquittal of Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng from corruption charges yesterday as a “black mark” for the new regime, but she was “not shocked” at all.
“I am not shocked but entertained. Talks about reforms (by the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government) are mere lip service to fish for votes,” she said in a statement.
To Soo, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) must be an independent body that is free of political influences and possesses the power to investigate and to prosecute.
She opined that if Lim, who was formerly Penang chief minister, wanted to clear his name, it should be done in accordance to the rule of law.
“LGE (Lim Guan Eng) should be brought before the court to clear his name if indeed he is innocent.
“No reason was given for aborting the corruption trial that was already underway with more than 20 witnesses having testified. Apparently, there was no consultation with MACC,” Soo lamented.
This episode, she said, left “another black mark for the new regime that won on the back of promising transparency and reforms”.
Lim was acquitted of graft charges by the Penang High Court. In response, MACC issued a statement stating that, “The MACC is shocked by the decision of the Penang High Court in acquitting the former chief minister of the charges of corruption in relation to a bungalow lot and the charge of conspiring with businesswoman Phang (Phang Li Koon), after the prosecution retract the case.”
The statement added, “MACC would like to stress that the decision was made by the Attorney-General’s Office and not the MACC.” — DayakDaily