What a difference a day makes. Today, Malaysia saw a cabinet reshuffle that ousted the former Deputy Prime Minister, as well as the announcement of a new Attorney General and a new Head of Special Branch.
Here’s a cheat sheet to some of the key positions announced today and how these relate to investigations into 1MDB.
DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER
Dato Seri Zahid Hamidi
Formerly held the role of Home Minister, now he continues that role while also gaining the Deputy Prime Minister spot. As Home Minister, Zahid brought about the amendments to the Sedition Act.
Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin
Ousted from the cabinet entirely. The Prime Minister justified the decision by saying that the cabinet needs to be united and disagreements shouldn’t be aired in public lest they lead to “public misconception”. Muhyiddin had recently criticised the way the Prime Minister was handling 1MDB.
Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali
Apandi Ali has been a Court of Appeal judge since 2010. In 2013, he ruled against the Catholic newspaper The Herald in its legal battle to use the word “Allah”, overruling a previous High Court decision.
Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail
Gani Patail was due to retire in October. According to the official statement, his post was terminated because of “health reasons”. He led a high-level task force investigating 1MDB, whose members also include MCMC and the Inland Revenue Board. However, he had been criticised for holding this position in the investigative task force while still AG.
Datuk Wilfred Madius Tangau as Science, Technology and Innovation Minister
Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed as Deputy Home Minister
Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican as Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister
Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin as Deputy Tourism and Culture Minister
Nur Jazlan was the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, while the others also held positions in the PAC. The PAC has been dealing with investigations into 1MDB and received an interim report on the investigation earlier this month. The 1MDB investigations are now going to be put on hold since these deputy ministers must resign from their posts in order to take up their new positions in the cabinet.
Update: on 29 July, it was reported at the PAC intends to continue investigating and does not need to put the probe on hold.
1MDB critic Mohd Shafie Apdal has been dropped as Rural and Regional Development Minister. He is replaced by Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, former Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister.
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