PETALING JAYA: Chua Jui Meng, the country’s longest-serving health minister, died today. He was 80.
The former five-term Bakri MP was the health minister for nine years, from 1995 to 2004.
Segamat MP R Yuneswaran told FMT that he just received news about Chua’s death from his son.
Separately, a MCA source said Chua had a heart attack a week ago and had been hospitalised since then.
Chua, a former MCA vice-president who served Barisan Nasional’s second biggest component party for 35 years, was known to have vast influence in Johor.
Chua left MCA in 2009 to join PKR, citing, among others, a loss of confidence in the MCA leadership led by former president Ong Tee Keat and the sudden “mysterious” death of DAP political aide Teoh Beng Hock under the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s (MACC) watch. He was later appointed Johor PKR chief.
Chua last contested in the 2013 general election (GE13), losing the battle for the Segamat parliamentary seat to then MIC president and the seat’s incumbent, Dr S Subramaniam, by 1,217 votes.