Friday 21 Jun 2024
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KUALA LUMPUR (Jan 7): Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commissioner (MACC) chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki has opened the Pandora’s Box and plunged the commission into its worst confidence crisis, according to veteran DAP strongman Lim Kit Siang.

In a statement on Friday (Jan 7), the Iskandar Puteri Member of Parliament said Azam had raised the question about the usefulness of the five purportedly “independent” committees to ensure the MACC’s integrity and performance and to protect citizens’ rights.

“There is the MACC’s Anti-Corruption Advisory Board which allegedly cleared Azam of interest-of-conflict allegations publicly made more than two months ago without conducting any investigations but purely on Azam’s explanation, acting completely outside its statutory powers under the MACC Act 2009,” Kit Siang claimed.

He also questioned as to what made MACC Anti-Corruption Advisory Board chairman Tan Sri Abu Zahar Ujang and the other board members believe that they had the power to declare the MACC chief commissioner innocent.

“What made Azam Baki believe that the MACC’s Anti-Corruption Advisory Board had such powers, prompting him to declare that he was only answerable to the board and dismissing in the process the respective roles of the Attorney-General, the courts, Parliament and the people of Malaysia?” Kit Siang asked.

According to him, it is clear that the MACC’s Anti-Corruption Advisory Board does not and cannot have the last say on whether Azam has been cleared of the conflict-of-interest allegations.

Meanwhile, Kit Siang also stressed that Azam’s demand for RM10 million damages and a public apology from whistle-blower Lalitha Kunaratnam does not clear him of the conflict-of-interest allegations either.

The DAP strongman urged the Parliamentary Special Select Committee on Agencies under the Prime Minister’s Department to invite non-governmental organisations concerned about the issue, be it Bersih, the Center to Combat Corruption and Cronyism, Transparency International Malaysia, Rasuah Busters or SUARAM, to send representatives to participate in the committee's hearing on the conflict-of-interest allegations against the MACC chief commissioner.

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