Sudden flurry of ACA
activities – evidence of new ACA independence to root out corruption or just
intensified PR and replay of high-profile pre-election anti-corruption
action four years ago which fizzled into nothing?
by Lim Kit Siang
There has been a sudden flurry
of Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) activities – with the ACA Director-General
Datuk Ahmad Said Hamdan courageously declaring: “We
do not discriminate. Small fry or big fish, we will go after them if they
This was on the same day that the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah
Ahmad Badawi visited the ACA and after a “brief meeting” with its top
management and state directors, publicly praised the ACA for a job well
done, with the following summing-up by Ahmad: “He (the Prime Minister)
said he thought we were doing a good job, he is happy, and wants us to
continue doing our best.”
There has been a sudden flurry of ACA activities in the past few days –
but is this evidence of new ACA independence to root out corruption or
just intensified PR (Public Relations) and replay of the high-profile
pre-election anti-corruption action four years ago which fizzled into
In a week’s time, Abdullah will be completing his fourth year as the fifth
Prime Minister of Malaysia.
The high hopes which Abdullah had raised among Malaysians to initiate
government reforms and wipe out corruption are still fresh in the minds of
When Abdullah became Prime Minister, the country was told that 18
high-profile personalities – the ikan yu (sharks) - would be arrested and
prosecuted but four years later, not a single high-profile personality had
been brought to justice, while most of the 18 “ikan yu” have escaped and
are swimming merrily in the South China Sea.
If it is true that Abdullah had given the ACA “a pat on the back for a job
well done”, then what was it that Abdullah was happy about the track
record of the ACA in the past four years to wipe out corruption?
Is it because the National Integrity Plan launched by Abdullah in May 2004
had been such a failure, as its five-year objective to improve Malaysia’s
ranking of Transparency International (TI) Corruption Perception Index
(CPI) from No. 37 in 2003 to at least No. 30 next year had suffered even
worse reverses, plunging to even worse rankings than during the previous
administration of Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad – i.e. No. 44 in 2006 and No.
43 in 2007?
Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic
Planning Commission Chairman