The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) today arrested the chairman of an engineering consultancy firm, with the title Datuk Seri, to assist in the investigation into alleged corruption in the construction of the Penang tunnel project.

According to MACC sources, the 62-year-old man was detained at 2.45pm when he went to the MACC headquarters to give his statement.

“It is believed that he was involved in the preparation of false claim documents for the feasibility study of three major roads and the undersea tunnel project in Penang, worth about RM305 million, submitted to the state government,” the sources said.

He said the MACC was also investigating whether other individuals had abetted the suspect in falsifying the documents.

MACC deputy chief commissioner (Operation) Azam Baki, when contacted, confirmed the arrest but declined to elaborate.

Yesterday, the MACC arrested a female engineering consultant in a Kuala Lumpur-based company to assist in the investigations and she has been remanded for five days beginning today.

On Jan 19, two individuals with the title “Datuk”, who were remanded for six days to facilitate investigations into the same case, were released on bail.

The contract for the 7.2km undersea tunnel project linking Persiaran Gurney to Bagan Ajam in Seberang Perai and three major roads was awarded to Consortium Zenith Construction, which consists of several companies.

The project had attracted controversy for its allegedly excessive cost of the feasibility studies besides objections from residents worried about its economic, social and environmental impact.

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