Yong decides to take leave from exco duties

Perak executive councillor Paul Yong Choo Kiong was charged on Friday with raping an Indonesian woman. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Perak executive councillor Paul Yong Choo Kiong has decided to take leave from his official duties, after he was charged on Friday with raping an Indonesian woman.

The Housing, Local Government, Public Transportation, Non-Muslim Affairs and New Villages Committee chairman said this is to enable him to focus on the trial ahead so that he can establish his innocence and clear his name.

“I feel that I should put the interests of the state ahead of my personal interests, as I have always done in my career as a politician, and I will communicate this decision of mine to the menteri besar today,” he said in a statement.

Yong, who said he will continue to serve his constituents as the Tronoh assemblyman, also denied the “baseless and unfounded allegations” against him, describing them as “an ugly political conspiracy”.

“The severity of these allegations has caused massive distress to me, my family and colleagues,” he said.

He said he has instructed his lawyers to request from the court the earliest possible trial dates to be fixed, “so that I can be vindicated as soon as possible”.

Yong had initially refused to go on leave, saying he has not been found guilty, despite Menteri Besar Ahmad Faizal Azumu advising him to do so.