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Zenith director says no intention of making up evidence in Guan Eng graft case

Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli says he is indebted to the former Penang chief minister and doesn't want to implicate him.

2 minute read
Former Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng at the Kuala Lumpur court complex yesterday. Photo: Bernama
Former Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng at the Kuala Lumpur court complex yesterday. Photo: Bernama

Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd (CZCSB) director Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli told the Sessions Court yesterday that he was indebted to former Penang chief minister Lim Guan Eng.

Zarul, 62, said he had no intention of fabricating evidence and linking Lim's name in the corruption case on the construction of the main roads and undersea tunnel in Penang.

"I have no intention of making up a story against Lim because I am indebted to him. If possible, I don't want to implicate him in any case," he said at Lim’s case hearing.

He said he instructed CZCSB's former director and former senior vice-president of finance and corporate services, Ibrahim Sahari and Azli Adam, to use forged invoices and payment vouchers to cover the trail of cash payments to Lim.

The 23rd prosecution witness, in his testimony in court, earlier said that Lim had asked for a bribe of 10% of the profits his company would earn in the construction project.
Responding to deputy public prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin on whether the order to falsify the invoices was made to avoid being investigated and not to defend Lim, Zarul said this was done so that Lim's name would not appear in any CZCSB account.

Zarul said that after being released from the custody of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in early January 2018 in relation to the investigation of the corruption case, he had met with Ibrahim and Azli and told the truth that the invoices and vouchers in question were payments to Lim.

Asked by Wan Shaharuddin about two statements he had issued to the media in July 2018, Zarul said Lim had instructed him to do so, to prevent CZCSB from being further investigated by MACC.

"I received instructions from Lim to release the media statements to make it appear as if I was forced when giving a statement to the MACC regarding the tunnel corruption case," he said.

Lim faces an amended charge of using his position as the Penang chief minister to accept a bribe of RM3.3 million in helping a company owned by Zarul obtain a construction project worth RM6,341,383,702, at the Penang Chief Minister's Office, 28th Floor in Komtar, George Town between January 2011 and August 2017.

In the second amended charge, Lim is accused of asking Zarul for a bribe of 10% of the company's profits, as a form of appreciation for getting the project. He is accused of committing the act near The Garden Hotels, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City, in March 2011.

Lim, the former secretary-general of DAP, also faces two charges of causing two land lots worth RM208.8 million belonging to the Penang government to be disposed of to two companies, allegedly related to the undersea tunnel project.

He is alleged to have committed the offence at the Penang Land and Mines Office, Floor 21, Komtar on Feb 17, 2015 and March 22, 2017.

The hearing before judge Azura Alwi continues on Aug 4.