Lim Guan Eng’s corruption trial: I was never asked to change story, says witness

A witness told the High Court hearing Lim Guan Eng’s (picture) corruption case today that he was never asked by any Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) officer to change his story regarding the RM2 million payment allegedly given to the former Penang Chief Minister.

Consortium Zenith Beijing Urban Construction Group Sdn Bhd’s (CZBUCG) former senior vice-president (Finance and Corporate Services) Azli Adam, 58, insisted that he was not “taught” by any MACC officer to do so.

He said this when questioned by deputy public prosecutor (DPP) Mohammed Mokhzani Faris Mokhtar whether he was asked by a MACC officer at any time between 2018 and 2020 to change his story regarding the case.

When cross-examined by Lim’s lawyer, Gobind Singh Deo,  the 28th prosecution witness told the court that it was Zarul Ahmad who told him that the RM2 million was paid to Lim.

Azli said Zarul told him that when he was called up for investigation by the MACC at its headquarters in Putrajaya and Zarul was on remand there.

“I was with Zarul in the MACC investigation room, which is at the basement, when I was told about it,” he added.

When put by Govind Singh that Zarul lied to him about the RM2 million that was given to Lim,  Azli responded by saying “I don’t know”.

Earlier, Azli told the court that he had never seen the RM2 million handed over to businessman G. Gnanaraja, saying that the matter could only be confirmed by Zarul.

Gnanaraja was charged at the Shah Alam Sessions Court on April 3, 2019 to three charges of cheating Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZCSB) director Datuk Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli of RM19 million.

He was alleged to have deceived Zarul Ahmad into believing that he could help him close the MACC investigation against him linked to the same project.

Azli, who previously testified in the Shah Alam Sessions Court, when questioned by  DPP Datuk Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin today, said he knew about the RM2 million given to Gnanarajaafter the hearing in Shah Alam.

Wan Shaharuddin: Did you see the money given Gnanaraja? 

Azli: No

Lim is facing an amended charge of using his position as the then Penang Chief Minister to accept a bribe of RM3.3 million in helping a company owned by Zarul Ahmad to obtain a construction project worth RM6,341,383,702 at the Office of the Chief Minister of Penang, 28th Floor, Komtar, George Town between Jan 2011 and Aug 2017.

On the second amended charge, Lim is accused of soliciting a bribe from Zarul Ahmad, namely 10 per cent of the company’s profits, as an inducement for obtaining the project and is accused of committing the act near The Gardens Hotel, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City here on March 2011.

He is also facing two charges of causing two plots of land worth RM208.8 million owned by the Penang government to be disposed of to companies allegedly linked to the undersea tunnel project.

The offence was allegedly committed at the Penang Land and Mines Office, 21st Floor, Komtar on Feb 17, 2015, and March 22, 2017.

The hearing before judge Azura Alwi continues tomorrow. – BERNAMA