Probe into Malaysia’s ex-finance minister Daim based on Pandora Papers: Anti-graft agency

KUALA LUMPUR: The corruption investigation against Malaysia’s former finance minister Daim Zainuddin was based on information obtained from the Pandora Papers, the country’s anti-graft agency said on Saturday (Dec 30).

The probe started in February, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said, a day after Mr Daim broke his silence on the matter and accused Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim of initiating a “political witch-hunt”.

He also criticised MACC chief Azam Baki for unprofessional conduct, such as making “various prejudicial comments” against him in public while investigations are still ongoing. 

In a statement on Saturday, the anti-graft agency said Mr Daim’s comments have “caused confusion and misunderstanding to the general public”.

“First of all, the MACC has never at any point raised or issued any official statement accusing Daim of committing any offences,” the agency said, as quoted by the Star.

“In the case of Daim, the MACC opened an investigation paper in February 2023 based on information from the Pandora Papers.”

The Pandora Papers are a trove of documents, leaked in 2021, that revealed the hidden wealth of world leaders, billionaires and celebrities who used offshore companies to acquire mansions, private jets and stakes in companies.

Mr Daim said in the wake of the leak that his business dealings, as revealed in the Pandora Papers, were legitimate. He added that he was a “successful and wealthy” businessman long before he entered politics and that taxes had been fully paid for his businesses and income. 

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