Tunku Abdul Aziz Ibrahim
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Malaysian government accused of 'meddling' over inquiry

A senior anti-corruption official in Malaysia has accused the government of "meddling" in an independent investigation into allegations against the Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Mr Najib received a payment of $700m (£460m) into his personal bank account.

It was alleged that the money came from state investment fund 1MDB, but Mr Najib said the money did not come from 1MDB and was a donation.

Malaysia's anti-corruption commission investigated and said it had verified that claim. Both the prime minister and 1MDB deny doing anything wrong.

But Tunku Abdul Aziz Ibrahim, who is chairman of the advisory board to the commission, told BBC News that actions by the government during the investigation had been "ill-advised" and amounted to "meddling".

The state investment fund 1MDB was set up in 2009 when the prime minister came to power. It started to attract national attention when it missed repayments on debts of $11bn.

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Swiss authorities on Wednesday froze tens of millions of dollars belonging to 1MDB and held in Swiss banks. The attorney general's office in Switzerland is investigating people linked to 1MDB on suspicion of corruption and money laundering.

1MDB has said it will co-operate fully with the Swiss investigation.

The anti-corruption commission is continuing to investigate the source of the payment to Mr Najib and says the donors who deposited the money are from the Middle East. But it has not disclosed their identities.

The scandal has gripped Malaysia and last weekend thousands took to the streets in Kuala Lumpur to protest, calling for the prime minister to stand down.

The protests were supported by former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamed. Mr Najib says he is a victim of a political conspiracy.

Tunku Abdul Aziz Ibrahim spoke to the BBC's Pamela Koh, who asked him who might have donated this money and why.

  • 03 Sep 2015
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