Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Is it all an 'image rectification' exercise by MACC and the BN government?

Malaysian government is finally acting against corruption and graft... (Or are they)?

But alas, it is not the 'big crooks' that get charged, only the smaller unknowns especially when it comes to those from the BN.

During the tenure of Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, 2 'medium-sized' characters were charged, an UMNO Senator , i.e. the Land and Cooperative Development Minister, Tan Sri Kasitah Gaddam......, and an aging business tycoon, Tan Sri Eric Chia Eng Hock.

There was a big show in charging them, but do you know what happened to these cases? They were both acquitted. Why?

Well, based on newspaper reports, "In both cases, it was as if the prosecution was not interested in ensuring that they be found guilty - and they failed to call important crucial witnesses, hence sabotaging their own case. Is this also not 'corruption'?". See earlier blog posting, that also has the 2 newspaper reports, which clearly showed the reasons for the acquital.Kasitah Gaddam & Eric Chia - Prosecution's failure to call witnesses - Was it just incompetence OR....?

Thus, I am not at all convinced that there is serious political will to eradicate corruption in Malaysia. MACC, please prove me wrong.

There also is that 'double standards' when it comes with dealing with corruption. For example, why were those found guilty of money politics (or corruption) in UMNO never charged in court. See earlier post:-'Corruption' and Discrimination in UMNO - Has the report to MACC against Ali Rustam (and KJ) been made?

Many policemen and public servants are also dealt with through internal disiplinary mechanisms, and not charged in court - Why? See earlier post: Arrest, charge and try 'dirty cops' in the same way as other persons in Malaysia. Art 8 - Equality and Equal Protection of the Law should apply to ALL

Some say that sudden activity by MACC on cracking down corruption, is just an image cleansing exercise by MACC and the BN government. Teoh Beng Hock's death has affected the image of the MACC for sure.

We must fight corruption - and we need an independent body to do that work. The MACC should be investigating the big boys as well, and that would include our Prime Minister as well, as there have been allegations of corruption made against him as well.

With regard the Opposition and/or the Pakatan Rakyat, you must also fully cooperate with the MACC and the police when they are investigating reports lodged against your members, MPs and ADUNs. Do not hinder investigations on the basis of the belief that the BN government is targeting the opposition. If you do not cooperate, then will you still have the moral credibility to point fingers at the BN and its cronies? Hence, if there is corruption within the party, take the immediate step to report it, so that proper investigations could be conducted. Do not be like UMNO - who just like to keep it an internal, away from the police and the MACC.

The credibility of the MACC is also in question when BN MPs and ADUNs get arrested and charged for corruption. Did you not give a 'clean bill of health' to these persons just before the elections. By the way, that is NOT the role of the MACC (or the ACA). Do not waste time investigating election candidates at the request of their party. Investigate the reports of corruption only.

Have things changed in Malaysia? Has the government of the day finally decided to fight corruption at ALL levels? I w0nder...

SHAH ALAM: Six people were charged in various Sessions Courts here for misappropriation of funds, criminal breach of trust, false claims and misrepresentation.

Among those charged by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Com­mission (MACC) was Sabak Bernam’s Barisan Nasional MP Abdul Rahman Bakri, who faces eight counts of making claims of RM10,000 each for events that never took place.

He was accused of having committed the offences when he was the Sg Air Tawar assemblyman prior to the 2008 general election.

Abdul Rahman, who claimed trial to all the charges, was charged under Section 11 (c) of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997.

If found guilty, he can be jailed between six months and 20 years, and fined not less than five times the sum or value of the gratification or RM10, 000, whichever is higher, for each charge.

In the dock: (From left clockwise) Abdul Rahman, Yap, Wong, Mohd Rosli, Firdaus and Yahaya.

The commission’s legal affairs and prosecution chief, Datuk Abdul Razak Musa, told judge Syafeera Mohd Said that the anti-graft agency offered Abdul Rahman bail of RM30,000.

However, Abdul Rahman’s counsel Datuk Salehuddin Saidin asked for bail to be set at RM8,000 and said a high amount would only burden his client, who was innocent until proven guilty.

Syafeera rejected Salehuddin’s request, set bail at RM30,000 and fixed Dec 14 for mention of the case, and April 26 to May 7 next year for the trial.

A group of eight Barisan MPs turned up at the court to lend Abdul Rahman moral support, including Tenggara MP Datuk Halimah Mohd Sadique, Parit Sulong MP Datuk Noraini Ahmad and Silam MP Salleh Kalbi.

Abdul Rahman’s aide, Mohd Rosli Busro, was charged at another Sessions Court on eight counts of abetting his boss.

Mohd Rosli claimed trial and judge Mat Ghani Abdullah fixed bail at RM9,000 with one surety, and set April 26 to May 7, 2010 for his trial.

Also charged at Mat Ghani’s court was former Teratai assemblyman Yap Soo Sun, who faced seven charges of making false claims for events that never took place.

Yap claimed trial and Mat Ghani set bail at RM25,000 with one surety as well as fixed May 3 to May 7 next year for the trial.

At Syafeera’s court earlier, Yap’s aide Firdaus Abu Zarin was also slapped with seven charges of abetting Yap by providing fake documentation for him to make the bogus claims.

She set bail at RM8,000 with one surety. Both Yap and Firdaus, who were also charged under Section 11 (c) of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997, will be tried together.

Also in the dock was Selangor exco member Ronnie Liu’s special assistant Wong Chuan How, who was charged in Syafeera’s court for two counts of misappropriating funds.

He was accused of fraudulently submitting a claim of RM2,500 to the Sepang District Council for the purchase of mini-flags that were never delivered.

He was also charged for committing criminal breach of trust involving a cheque amounting RM5,000.

Syafeera set bail at RM5,000 and fixed March 29 to April 2 for Wong’s case to be heard.

He was charged under Section 11 (c) of the Anti-Corruption Act 1997 for the first offence and Section 406 of the Penal Code for the second offence.

Earlier, Wong’s counsel Salim Bashir asked the court to set a lower bail as the accused was middle-aged and had health problems.

Later in the day, Wong was taken to Mat Ghani’s court where he was charged under Section 406 of the Penal Code for criminal breach of trust involving another cheque amounting RM2,500.

He also faced an alternative charge of misusing the cheque under Section 403 of the same code.

Mat Ghani also set bail at RM5,000 with one surety and fixed March 8 to 12 next year as trial date.

Wong claimed trial to all three charges.

Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim’s former aide Yahaya Saari was also charged at Syafeera’s court for misleading Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd chairman Datuk Abd Karim Munisar into giving him RM50,000 to organise an event to celebrate Pakatan Rakyat’s 100 days in office.

He was also charged for using fake documents to open a bank account for PKR.

Yahaya, who was charged under Section 420 of the Penal Code for the first offence and Section 471 of the Penal Code for the second offence, claimed trial and the court fixed bail at RM10,000 and set April 19 to 23, next year, for the trial.

If found guilty, Yahaya faces a jail term of up to 10 years, whipping and a fine for the first offence and a maximum of two years’ jail or a fine or both under Section 465 of the same code for the second offence. - Star, 4/11/2009, Sabak Bernam MP and five others charged with graft

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