No project linked to MACC probe on minister's political secretary

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KLANG (April 9): Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Salahuddin Ayub denied the existence of development projects which led the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to conduct an investigation on his political secretary.

He said the commission's investigation against his political aide has completed and for now no action has been taken against him.

"No projects (to be developed by the Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry Ministry), it's nonsense," he said briefly to reporters when met after the opening of Goodday Milk factory here today.

Salahuddin added that he had no problems with his political secretary continuing with his duties as usual, since there was no prosecution against him.

On April 1, the MACC detained the 47-year-old political secretary on suspicion of accepting a luxury watch worth RM28,000 but he was released last Thursday.

According to a source, the man was believed to have received the watch as an inducement to help a company to obtain development projects under the ministry.

In another development, Salahuddin said the government was prepared to be the facilitator to further boost the country's dairy industry by attracting more foreign direct investments.

He said the matter was also discussed in the Cabinet meeting and among measures to be taken were introducing more business-friendly policies, reducing bureaucratic red tape and giving tax exemptions.

Last year, fresh milk requirements by Malaysians were 63 million litres, of which 38.5 million litres were produced locally while 24.5 million litres were imported from New Zealand, Australia and several other countries.