Former Malaysian deputy PM detained amid graft investigation
Malaysia’s anti-graft agency arrested a former deputy prime minister, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, on Thursday in connection with an investigation into suspected misappropriation of funds from a charity foundation, the agency said, Reuters reports.
Ahmad Zahid leads the opposition as the president of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), the once-powerful party that ruled Malaysia for 60 years before being ousted in a shock general election defeat in May.
He is the latest former high-ranking official to be arrested over suspected graft since the election.
Ex-premier Najib Razak and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, face multiple charges in connection with a multi-billion dollar scandal at state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).
Najib has denied wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty to 32 criminal charges involving more than 2.3 billion ringgit ($553.6 million) allegedly siphoned from 1MDB.
Rosmah has pleaded not guilty to 17 money-laundering offences.
Ahmad Zahid was arrested following an investigation into alleged “abuse of power, breach of trust, and money laundering”, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said in a statement.