…The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) announced that it had sufficient evidence to indict Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim for abuse of power. The MACC’s statement has drawn flak from Abdul Khalid’s co-leaders in Pakatan Rakyat while not unexpected though, has got the support of those on the other side of the divide. It would be wrong to say that the MACC erred because the majority of like-thinking Malaysians had for years, clamoured for an independent, partisan and efficient body to fight corruption. We got it in the form of the MACC and if it is the “new” way it is going about to be doing its job, there’s no other congratulatory word except Syabas for its efficiency.
It has been less than three months since Hari Raya Aidiladha when the issue of Abdul Khalid allegedly misusing his position to donate cows for slaughter in his parliamentary constituency of Bandar Tun Razak came up.
And it has been about a month since the issue of his personal car was publicly raised. Let us congratulate the MACC for investigating and wrapping up the case in a speedy manner. Well done, once again.
Having set a precedent in speed and practising transparency in Abdul Khalid’s case, let me as an interested party (having knowledge and provided information) raise some other issues which the public are demanding answers to:
» Shouldn’t the past presidents and officials of the Petaling Jaya City Council be brought before the courts, and made, in their personal capacity, liable to punishment, or to the payment of damages, for acts done in their official character but in excess of their lawful authority? Did they abuse their positions when they decreed that all applications for outdoor billboard licences should go through the sports club? They definitely broke the law by accepting “donations” in lieu of licence fees from advertisers. Besides, proceeds from the sales of its own publications were channelled to the sports club. If there’s an open-and-shut case of excess of their lawful authority, this is it. I can say this with conviction because the then ACA opened the files on this case more than three years ago.
» Shouldn’t the officials of the Youth and Sports Ministry be brought before the courts, and made, in their personal capacity, liable to punishment, or to the payment of damages, for acts done in their official character but in excess of their lawful authority? The ministry used RM17 million of taxpayers’ money to stage an international junior inter-club tournament, which ended in a flop. Besides, it advanced yet another RM8 million for the same tournament which has yet to take place. The ministry and its officials had abused their powers by acting as sports promoters or going into business.
» What happened to the infamous “Gasing Hilton” which operated illegally for 13 years where the dearly departed used it as their last place of rest? The ACA was even provided with photographs and even a letter of support for the illegal funeral parlour in Petaling Jaya. Yes, it was investigated but was there a public pronouncement of the status of the investigations and the case?
» Minutes of state exco meetings were forged and presented at a court hearing. Reports were made but nobody knows the outcome of the investigations. Shouldn’t the aggrieved parties be told about the case and shouldn’t the MACC provide a status report?
» Land meant for public facilities like telecommunications exchange, surau and playing field were alienated to individuals and political parties by the former Selangor state executive council. These cases have been widely reported but the MACC has yet to lift a finger let alone provide details of its investigation.
» State-owned Syarikat Permodalan Selangor had bought a RM159,000 watch for the then mentri besar. Shouldn’t the board members be investigated for abuse of their positions?
Terence Fernandez and I would be lying through our teeth if we said that we opposed the MACC. On the contrary, we were campaigning for an anti-corruption body with bite. We were and still are of the opinion that the MACC set-up if not the ideal model, is the best we can have under the present circumstances. The MACC has set high standards in Abdul Khalid’s case – efficiency and speed. What about the hundreds of other cases, including the pending 900 cases of money politics?
Would it come out in the open and tell us the status of cases like investigations into the file provided by former Gerak chief Ezam Mohd Nor on the wrong-doings of a cabinet minister? Or would it charge him for making a false report?
Similarly, what has the MACC done on the wrongdoings of public servants whose dubious deals have been listed in the auditor-general’s report?
Yes, MACC, you have set the ball rolling and you have to keep it in motion. Once it stops, you’ll be accused of practising double-standards and that you are not being independent.
You’ll be accused of selective prosecution and that would be a difficult charge to defend in view of your recent stand. The ball is at your feet and you have to kick it the way it should be. Scoring your own goal won’t win you any accolades or supporters.
MACC’s double standards exposed