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Media Statement (2) by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, 28th January 2009: 

What are you waiting for, MACC?

In his post-Kuala Terengganu by-election interview with New Sunday Times (January 25, 2009), "Upping the ante on anti-graft enforcement", the Chief Commissioner of Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Datuk Seri Ahmad Said Hamdan declared categorically that money politics is corruption. This came in the concluding part of the Q and A:

Q: Do you see any difference between money politics and corruption?
A: When you pay people to vote for you, that is corruption. People call it money politics but not us. Under the law, anybody who sells or buys votes is guilty of corruption, so we go on that basis.

Q: Is the MACC focused on cleaning up Umno?
A: Not just Umno, please be clear about that. We will take action against any political party involved in corruption. It seems that way only because it is now Umno season. The party itself asked us for help.

Q: Why then are we hearing about corruption only in Umno?
A: Others do not report. They get the money and keep their mouths shut. Umno members on the other hand are factional and report against each other.

Today's New Straits Times reported on two other Perak Umno State Assemblymen "rumoured to be on the verge of leaving the party" expressing their frustration and saying that "more defection to the Pakatan Rakyat could not be discounted".

This was the immediate follow-up to the former Umno Bota Assemblyman Datuk Nasarudin Hasham's quitting Umno for Pakatan Rakyat on Sunday.

This is from the New Straits Times report "2 more express frustration":

Two assemblymen told the New Straits Times they were mulling over their options if the situation in Umno did not change.

Lintang state assemblyman Datuk Ahamad Pakeh Adam and Pengkalan Baharu's Datuk Hamdi Abu Bakar said Umno had to stabilise itself in Perak and show that it cared and respected senior members serving as elected representatives.

Both Ahamad and Hamdi, who were Sungai Siput and Beruas Umno division chiefs respectively, lost their posts at divisional elections last year.

Ahamad said he was "frustrated" when told by Perak Umno liaison chief Datuk Seri Mohd Tajol Rosli Ghazali that he should not contest the Sungai Siput division chief's post.

"How can Tajol Rosli tell me not to contest the division chief's post? I am the only Barisan Nasional rep in the Sungai Siput constituency. Even Nasarudin was instructed not to contest the Parit division chief's post.

"Yes, I admit I met state PR leaders recently to discuss my deep frustration with Umno leaders' behaviour since the last general election.

"While I have not expressed my desire yet to join the PR, I may do so if things do not change for the better in Umno.

"People with money but who are not wakil rakyat have been elected as division chiefs because they were sanctioned to contest against incumbents who are elected reps," he alleged.

Hamdi, reported as denying that he had met state PR leaders, "admitted that, like Ahamad, he was frustrated".

Hamdi also claimed that money had been used to win division positions in the state.

I do not want to comment on Umno internal politics or the frustrations of Ahamad and Hamdi with UMNO. These are internal Umno matters.

However, Ahamad and Hamdi's complaints about the use of money to defeat them as Sungai Siput and Beruas Umno division chiefs are not just internal UMNO matters but constitute corruption as clearly stated by the Chief Commissioner of MACC in the Sunday Times interview.

As Ahamad and Hamid would have ample evidence of the crime of corruption in the Umno divisional elections which caused their defeat as Umno chiefs in their respective divisions, so that those guilty of money politics in Umno division elections in Sungai Siput, Bruas and other Perak divisions could be arrested, charged and convicted for corruption, what is the MACC waiting for?

*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor



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