Singapore Transport Minister Resigns Amid Serious Corruption Charges

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Singapore’s Transport Minister, S. Iswaran, is confronting 27 counts in a significant bribery investigation, marking one of the nation’s most serious and unusual corruption cases in decades.

Iswaran, vehemently denying the accusations, faces charges from the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB), as reported by Reuters.

In a Tuesday resignation letter, Iswaran rejected the charges and stated, “I will now focus on clearing my name.”

The prime minister’s office released the letter on Thursday, where Iswaran pledged to refund his wages and allowances from the beginning of last July’s investigations.

Despite taking a leave of absence, he continued to receive monthly payments.The CPIB alleges that Iswaran, arrested in July last year, accepted S$384,340.98 (US$286,181) in kickbacks from property billionaire Ong Beng Seng to advance Ong’s business interests.

The charge sheets detail several alleged favours, including tickets to football games and musicals, a trip on Ong’s private plane, and seats to the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix.

The charges have sent shockwaves through Singapore, known for its reputation of clean government.

Iswaran is a key political figure who has played a significant role in overseeing the tourism industry, including the city-state’s Formula One Grand Prix debut.

The resignation of Iswaran has dealt a serious blow to the ruling People’s Action Party.

The last high-profile corruption inquiry involving a minister occurred in 1986 when National Development Minister Teh Cheang Wan tragically took his own life before formal charges were filed.

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