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Malaysia’s ex-finance minister Daim Zainuddin says wealth amassed before politics amid probe: ‘I always owned assets’

Malaysia’s former finance minister Daim Zainuddin had amassed his wealth long through legitimate business activities before his entry into politics.

According to Daim, he was a “fairly successful and wealthy businessman” whose involvement in business was the subject of books and articles before his appointment as a minister.

“I have always owned assets and properties overseas since the 1970s,” he said in his supporting affidavit.

If I had stayed in business and done nothing to actively grow these assets, the value of my liquid stock holdings alone would be worth over 50 billion ringgit today

Daim Zainuddin, ex-Malaysian finance minister

The affidavit was filed together with an application by Daim and his family members for leave to commence judicial review to challenge a probe against them by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

His background in business has always been in the public domain and Daim said he stood to gain more wealth had he not joined politics.

“If I had stayed in business and done nothing to actively grow these assets, the value of my liquid stock holdings alone would be worth over 50 billion ringgit (US$10.8 billion) today.

“That is my personal cost today in my decision to join the government.

“As the numbers above show, my decision to join the government and serve my country came at a great financial loss to myself and my family,” he said.

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On January 10, Daim and his family filed the application to take the MACC to court.

In the application, Daim and his wife Naimah Khalid named the MACC and the public prosecutor as the first and second respondents respectively.

Apart from Daim and Naimah, other applicants were their four children, and Ilham Tower which was seized by the MACC.

Daim and family want a court declaration that MACC’s actions were unlawful, unconstitutional and void, among others.

According to the notice of application, they are seeking a declaration that the MACC and its officers have no reasonable cause to investigate Daim and his family, which would lead to a prosecution for any offence under the MACC Act 2009 or the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.

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They sought a declaration that even if any charges were to be instituted against him and family, such charges would be unconstitutional and void because they would not receive a fair trial.

The family also wants an order of certiorari against the MACC and its officers to quash all investigations, as well as an order of prohibition to cease all further investigations.

Daim and his family also sought for their properties, assets and monies that were seized to be returned to them.

The matter is fixed for hearing online on January 16.

This story was first published by the Star

Article was originally published from here

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