Malaysia is facing now a 'corruption crisis' and also a 'financial crisis' - the two are different and require response. The corruption crisis, is essentially allegations of corruptions against Najib Tun Razak, our Prime Minister - a public officer.
The financial crisis is the impact faced by Malaysia, as the rest of the world. Now, our 'corruption crisis' would also have added impact on Malaysia's financial crisis - and our ringgit is suffering.
Now, Transparency International (not just the Malaysian Chapter), but the international group is saying
...Malaysia must provide answers on the US$700 million (RM2.6 billion) transferred to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak's accounts...Malaysia's commitment towards fighting corruption cannot be taken seriously as long as it did not explain who paid the money, why, and what happened to it...There is a corruption crisis here...
Transparency international went further criticizing the recent actions of the government..
...the attorney-general “who was critical of the government” was replaced, the task force probing into 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) was suspended, investigators were arrested, and newspapers suspende "These are not the actions of a government that is fighting corruption...
Malaysia must explain US$700 million donation, says international anti-graft group
Its president, Jose Ugaz, said Malaysia's commitment towards fighting corruption cannot be taken seriously as long as it did not explain who paid the money, why, and what happened to it.
"We want to see more progress (from Malaysia) but that cannot happen while there are unanswered questions about the US$700 million that made its way into the prime minister's personal bank account," said Ugaz at the opening ceremony of the 16th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC).
The hall, which comprised delegates from across the world, broke into applause at his statement. "No one can be in Malaysia and not be aware of the corruption allegations of recent months and how damaging they are to the country.
"There is a corruption crisis here," said Ugaz.
He said in recent weeks, the attorney-general “who was critical of the government” was replaced, the task force probing into 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) was suspended, investigators were arrested, and newspapers suspended.
"These are not the actions of a government that is fighting corruption.
"We may well hear promises of reform. That is not what is needed at this time. And promises alone will not restore confidence and trust," said Ugaz.
Ugaz, a Peruvian lawyer with a history of taking on grand corruption, said only “one man” could provide answers, in an apparent reference to Najib.
But he said if the man refused to come forward, then only a fully independent investigation, free from political interference, could uncover the truth.
"Until that happens, no claim from the government on anti-corruption will be credible."
Kuala Lumpur is hosting the ongoing IACC and Najib was to have given the keynote address.
Earlier today, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low said he advised Najib to pull out from officiating IACC in Putrajaya today in case the environment turned "hostile".
The conference at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre ends on Friday.
Touted as a premier global gathering of anti-corruption stakeholders, the IACC is held once every two years and this year it drew 1,000 delegates from 130 countries. – September 2, 2015.
Malaysia facing major corruption crisis, global anti-graft watchdog says
With members from over 100 countries, the non-governmental world anti-corruption organisation said it is seeking a strong commitment from the Malaysian government in three key areas.
“Malaysia is facing a major corruption crisis,” TI said in a brief statement issued after its annual membership meeting in Putrajaya.
It called on the Malaysian government to ensure independent investigations into all corruption allegations and a follow-through with prosecutions and punishments against the perpetrators regardless of their identity.
“If Malaysia is to get through its current crisis, then the government must let those who know how to investigate corruption do their job. The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission must be able to act independently and be free from political interference,” José Ugaz, TI chairman, said in a later statement.
The call was among three resolutions passed today at the global anti-corruption organisation’s Annual Membership Meeting in Putrajaya, Malaysia.
The watchdog said many countries around the world face similar crises and the commitments should apply to them as well, but made a seemingly unusual note specific to Malaysia in its statement.
The global watchdog also resolved to press for reconciliation and amnesty laws that do not legalise impunity, and pointed to recent developments in Mongolia which passed a new law to grant amnesty to anyone being investigated by its anti-corruption body.
TI noted too that the Tunisian parliament is weighing a similar law that would allow people who stole public funds to be given amnesty for past crimes.
Tens of thousands of Malaysians took to the streets in the national capital on Saturday and Sunday in a 34-hour demonstration to pressure the prime minister to step down from office.
Organised by electoral reform group Bersih 2.0, the rally dubbed Bersih 4 had five official demands: clean elections; clean government; right to dissent; strengthening parliamentary democracy and saving the economy.
Like many other countries worldwide, Malaysia’s economy has been affected by recent economic rumbles in China, but its currency has only recently recovered from a 17-year low when it plunged to below the RM3.80 peg to the US dollar instituted following the Asian Financial Crisis of 1998.
Foreign investor confidence in Malaysia has also been hit, with ratings agencies Moody’s and Fitch both warning of a possible downgrade to Malaysia’s credit outlook.
On June 30, Fitch had revised the country’s sovereign credit outlook to “positive” from “negative” previously.
On July 3, a political storm erupted over a Wall Street Journal article on debt-laden state fund 1MDB stating that almost US$700 million (now estimated at RM2.9 billion) from 1MDB had been deposited in Najib’s personal bank account, international news wire Reuters reported.
Najib has denied any wrongdoing, saying that he has not received money from 1MDB or any state agency for his personal gain.
Malaysia’s anti-graft commission has also said the funds were a political donation from a Middle Eastern nation, but without revealing the identity or source of the donors.