KUALA LUMPUR, Former Health Minister Datuk Chua Jui Meng, 80, died at the Serdang Hospital near here at 4.04 pm today.

PKR, on its Facebook page, extended its condolences to the family of Chua.

“He was the Johor PKR chairman for five years from 2009 to 2014. Under Chua’s leadership, for the first time PKR won the Batu Pahat parliamentary seat and the Bukit Batu state seat in the 2013 general election,” the post said.

The Muar-born Chua was the country’s longest-serving Health Minister, for nine years from 1995 to 2004, before he was dropped from the Cabinet of Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s administration.

He joined MCA in 1976 and was the party’s longest-serving vice-president (1990-2004), apart from holding several other posts, including Bakri division chief in 1987 and party deputy secretary-general (1987-1990).

Chua, a law graduate of Inner Temple, England, made his electoral debut in 1986 when he contested the Bakri parliamentary seat in Johor in the 7th general election (GE7) and won with a majority of 1,105 votes, beating Song Sing Kwee of DAP.

Chua went on to hold the seat for five terms until 2008.

In 2009, Chua quit MCA to join PKR.

Within a year of joining PKR, he was elected as its vice-president.

In GE13 in 2013, Chua contested the Segamat parliamentary seat in Johor on a PKR ticket but lost by 1,217 votes to Barisan Nasional (BN) candidate Tan Sri Dr S. Subramaniam.

Chua was married to Datin Honey Wong Nyet Lan and they were blessed with five children.

When he was Health Minister, Chua was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science by the Crimea State Medical University in Ukraine for his services and contributions to the field of health in Malaysia.

Chua underwent heart surgery at the National Heart Institute in 2000.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency