September 15, 2021
The Ombudsman Bill is at its final stage of ‘drawing-up’ and its draft was submitted to the Attorney—General Chambers (AGC) on August 24, 2021, according to Prime Minister Ismail Sabri on September 14.
He said the Bill would be tabled in the Parliament by 2022.
In his written reply to the Parliament on Tuesday, it was revealed that the Anti-Corruption (JKKMAR) No. 4 Year 2018 had on September 21, 2018, agreed to enact the law in relation to the Ombudsman (with research).
The Ombudsman was proposed by the Pakatan Harapan government in 2019 as part of its reform agenda.
The Pakatan Harapan government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the new government led by Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri on September 13, 2021, which paved the way for some of the latter’s reform initiatives to be reconsidered.
Once enacted, Ombudsman Malaysia would replace the Public Complaints Bureau (PCB) which was set up under the Prime Minister’s Department since 1971.
According to Ismail’s written reply to the Parliament, follow-up meetings have been conducted between the GIACC and the PCB of the PMD on July 15, 2019.
The decision had been for the policies’ scope as below, which will be reviewed and be included in the Ombudsman Malaysia Bill:
- The status and criteria for Ombudsman Malaysia to be set up as an independent body;
- Structure and appointments of the Ombudsman;
- The powers and jurisdiction of the Ombudsman as well as the wrongdoing (in the public service) which are subjected to punitive actions under the Act;
- Annual Report method of reporting; and
- The mechanism for the preparation of Budget allocations for Ombudsman Malaysia
C4 Center, in adding further to the discussion to propel the advancement of this legislature, has pressed for Ombudsman Malaysia’s findings of investigations (especially those involving public interest) to be made public.