Malaysia's anti-graft chief addresses affair claims

KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia's anti-graft chief Dzulkifli Ahmad has for the first time addressed rumours of his alleged extramarital affair, linking the claims to "dirty and disgusting attacks" by unnamed people.

But he did not directly confirm or deny the alleged affair with a woman who was then married.

Tan Sri Dzulkifli, chief commissioner of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), has led the agency from July last year, turning it into an aggressive body that has hauled up senior civil servants, politicians and aides of Cabinet ministers in high-profile cases, as well as those linked to opposition leaders.

Some of these raids conducted by the MACC involving government figures included accompanying pictures published in the media of luxury cars, branded watches, expensive handbags and piles of cash owned by the suspects.

Speaking on Tuesday to TV3, Malaysia's main news channel, he said: "I would like to stress that I and my colleagues in MACC will carry out our duty to the best of our ability and will not be affected by these dirty and disgusting attacks."

The allegations surfaced recently with a video of the alleged dalliance purportedly showing air tickets to Bali and several grainy pictures of Mr Dzulkifli and the woman.

Malaysian police chief Mohamad Fuzi Harun said police are investigating the case and are looking for the person who made the video that was posted on YouTube.

The woman at the centre of the allegations came out last week in a Facebook posting to say she is now divorced, the media reported, without naming her. But she denied the video's claims that her divorce was caused by the alleged extramarital affair, a sensitive issue in conservative Malaysia.

Several government leaders have come out to defend Mr Dzulkifli's aggressive work with the MACC.

MACC advisory board chairman Abdul Aziz Tunku Ibrahim told Malaysia's Berita Harian newspaper on Monday: "Every day, every week, there are corrupt individuals being brought to justice.

"A lot of corrupt politicians are getting jumpy, so they want to bring (Mr Dzulkifli) down by using the scandal to bring his morality into question."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 19, 2017, with the headline 'Malaysia's anti-graft chief addresses affair claims'. Print Edition | Subscribe