Ismail Sabri must act on Gomez’ shock resignation from MACC panel and end the two-month “conspiracy of silence” about allegations of MACC Chief’s ownership of close to two million shares in a public listed company
It would appear that Malaysia’s international infamy this year has not ended, although we are left with three days before we enter the New Year of 2022.
What other infamies are in store for Malaysia for the next three days?
Yesterday, a convicted criminal opened an international conference in Kuala Lumpur while today we have the shock resignation of the Edmund Terence Gomez from a Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Panel, highlighting that something is very rotten with the anti-corruption efforts in Malaysia.
Gomez resigned in protest against the MACC’s Consultation and Corruption Prevention Panel’s inaction against MACC chief commissioner Azam Baki’s alleged ownership of close to two million shares in a public listed company
Gomez said he had first brought the matter to the attention of the panel’s chairperson Borhan Dolah on Nov 12 and had urged him to convene a meeting to discuss the “critical issue of national interest”
Though Borhan had initially responded immediately and agreed to convene the panel, the meeting never materialised.
Gomez said he wrote two more times to Borhan about this matter and had attached more information he received about the business links of Azam’s family.
He had also noted to Borhan that the website that had first published the allegations against Azam on Oct.26 had been hacked after the articles were uploaded.
However, he did not receive any responses to either of the letters.
Gomez said the inaction of the MACC Consultation and Corruption Prevention Panel constitutes “a serious dereliction of duty to the nation” and was “unconscionable” and “extremely irresponsible.
Previously, Sungai Buloh MP R Sivarasa had filed an urgent motion seeking the Dewan Rakyat to discuss Azam’s alleged ownership of close to two million shares in a public listed company.
Sivarasa had alleged that between 2015 and 2016, when Azam was the MACC’s investigation director, he had become the owner of 930,000 shares in Gets Global Bhd as at April 30, 2015 and a further 1,029,000 shares as at March 31, 2016.
Sivarasa also claimed that, as of March 21, 2016, Azam also owned 2,156,000 warrants in public listed Excel Force MSC Bhd, while his younger brother owned 3,728,000 shares in Gets Global.
Public servants are barred from owning more than RM100,000 value of shares in any company.
They are also required to declare all their assets to their heads of departments under the Public Officers (Conduct and Discipline) Regulations 1993.
In his resignation letter, Gomez had also said it was “equally disturbing” that there were reports claiming a former MACC chief commissioner was also involved in a conflict-of-interest situation.
This suggested a trend in the MACC institution that must be investigated promptly, he said.
The Prime Minister, Ismail Sabri must act on Gomez’ shock resignation from MACC panel and end the two-month “conspiracy of silence” about allegations of MACC Chief’s ownership of close to two million shares in a public listed
This is urgent and imperative especially as Malaysians are waiting in dread for the Transparency International (TI) Corruption Perception Index (CPI) 2021 next month where Malaysia is expected to ranked and scored poorly, reflecting a worsening of the anti-corruption effort in Malaysia in the past year.
Ismail Sabri’s “Keluarga Malaysia” concept cannot based on a Malaysia which is regarded nationally and internationally as increasingly corrupt, which is also against the Rukun Negara nation-building principle of “courtesy and morality”.
There should be a Parliamentary Select Committee on Corruption and Abuses/Wastage of Public Funds which should conduct an investigation into the allegations surrounding the MACC Chief, Azam Baki, the Global Financial Integrity Reports which revealed that Malaysia lost a whopping RM1.8 trillion between 2005 and 2014 as well as the poor rank and score of Malaysia in the TI CPI reports.
The time has come for Malaysians to demand greater transparency and accountability on the subject, especially with the superfluous appointment of advisers for the Prime Minister when he had Cabinet Ministers looking after the portfolio, the appointment of superfluous envoys for regions when there are ambassadors appointed to each country, and the appointment of “dud” GLC appointments.