PETALING JAYA: Ongoing criminal proceedings against politicians charged with abuse of power must continue without delay or interference, says an anti-graft group.
In a statement, the Center to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4 Center) said this was instrumental in the task of public confidence-building as it would demonstrate that there was no place for graft in Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim’s administration.
“It is of utmost importance that these (court cases) are allowed to continue without delay nor interference, no matter their political party of the origin or any parliamentary support they may provide, especially in light of Anwar’s decision to hold a vote of confidence for the new government on Dec 19.
“As always, C4 Center will continue to foster open government policies at various levels of administration through public sector reform and increasing public participation in anti-corruption discussions,” it said.
MPs who have ongoing court cases include Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, DAP chairman Lim Guan Eng, Muda president Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman and Sabah Umno chief Bung Moktar Radin.
C4 Center said the coming months will serve as a litmus test for Anwar’s unity government in assessing their commitment to his good governance and reform agenda.
The NGO also reiterated its readiness to work with the government and provide expertise or aid in ensuring that these reforms were implemented.
The group said there was an urgent need for a Procurement Act to provide more oversight on public procurement processes and government spending.
C4 Center also said amendments to the Whistleblower Protection Act and Freedom of Information Act were needed while the Official Secrets Act and Asset Declaration Act should be repealed.
“The previous administration also assured that the political financing bill will be tabled soon. There is no reason for the new administration to delay this any further.”
C4 Center added that it was in the government and country’s best interests to rule transparently and with accountability following the previous administration’s shortcomings