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Malaysian top judges quit as new government cleans house

AFP  |  Kuala Lumpur 

Malaysia's top two judges are resigning, court officials said today, the latest senior public servants to leave their posts since the former lost power.

and appeals court are to step down on July 31, a judiciary statement said.

They are the latest senior officials to quit, or be forced from, their jobs since won a shock election victory last month on a pledge to clean up a beset by scandal and other abuses.

The attorney-general and central governor have both left their jobs after allegations related to a scandal surrounding sovereign wealth fund 1MDB. Ousted former Najib Razak, his family and cronies were accused of plundering billions of dollars from the fund in a sophisticated fraud.

Najib, who has been questioned by anti-graft investigators twice over the controversy since losing power, and 1MDB deny any wrongdoing. The judiciary statement said the judges' resignations were approved by the on June 8, as is required by law for such senior legal posts.

The judges had their terms extended last year despite exceeding the legal retirement age of 66 for their posts, in a move that sparked protests from Mahathir -- then in the opposition -- and the legal community.

Critics say the independence of Malaysia's judiciary has been eroded steadily over the years. Mahathir, who is 92 and serving as for the second time, is himself accused of starting the process of weakening the courts in the 1980s during his first period in office.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, June 13 2018. 13:15 IST