Coverage by: Free Malaysia Today
PETALING JAYA: The Center to Combat Corruption & Cronyism (C4) has urged Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob to draft an asset declaration law to show his commitment to battling corruption.
While C4 welcomed making heads of government-linked companies (GLC) and government-linked investment companies (GLICs), as well as members of the judiciary declare their assets, it said a law was needed to legally require politicians and civil servants to also do so.
C4 executive director Cynthia Gabriel also said her organisation remained unconvinced by the current administration’s commitment to the anti-corruption agenda.
“Ismail must put word to deed and prioritise the enactment of an Asset Declaration Act as a matter of immediate urgency to assure Malaysians that such a law will come into force in the near future,” she said in a statement.
She also said the new law must apply to family members and close associates of politicians, as well as heads of public institutions.
“All 13 state governments must enact their own Asset Declaration Act and it must be enforced upon those that take up public office, as well as on their family members.
“And the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) must initiate investigations and proceedings into big culprits and offenders who have shown obscene levels of unexplained wealth.”
Cynthia said a Dewan Rakyat motion passed by the Pakatan Harapan government in 2019 compelling MPs to declare their assets did not lead to any legal repercussions.
She added that some MPs did not comply, the motion was no longer being enforced, and all records of assets declared were no longer on MACC’s website.
She said an “all-encompassing anti-corruption” legal framework must include an Asset Declaration Act, Procurement Act and Freedom of Information Act.
She also urged Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to prove his commitment towards combating corruption by declaring his own assets following his acquittal on all 40 charges of corruption involving the foreign visa system.
Zahid, 69, had been accused of 33 counts of receiving bribes amounting to S$13.56 million (RM42 million) when he was home minister. He was also charged with seven other counts of obtaining for himself S$1.15 million, RM3 million, 15,000 Swiss francs and US$15,000 from the company.