MP for Gua Musang Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah has called for the search of creative yet legitimate means – whether by using existing laws or crafting new ones if necessary – to combat corruption while improving the chances of success in the prosecution of corruption cases.
“Another area of my great concern is the need to have guidelines and to implement rules regarding donations to political parties, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and media from local and foreign entities to prevent political corruption and the sovereignty of our country from being compromised,” he pointed out in a media statement.
“Whatever we do, we must be seen to be fair and just and the agencies concerned must act independently, without fear or favour.”
The former Finance Minister (1976-1984) further noted that many government politicians and civil servants complain that they are often unfairly perceived as the only targets of corrupt practices.
Both Tengku Razaleigh and former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad had earlier held a media conference at Yayasan Al-Bukhary in Kuala Lumpur following a meeting to discuss prospect of a “unity government”.
“Yes, the agencies concerned should give greater attention to combating corruption in private sector,” Tengku Razaleigh pointed out.
“But the difficulty which may be even worse in the private sector is getting the documentary and other evidence needed to charge anyone.”
According to him, the nature of the country’s legal system which is mostly derived from the Western world is such that the onus is on the agency concerned to secure hard evidence to prove corruption before anyone can be charged.
“I would like the public to understand the difficulties that our agencies face in charging people for corruption,” justified Tengku Razaleigh.
“The cooperation of those in the know in the private sector to come forward to report and provide evidence is essential for the success of any case to be prosecuted.”
Elsewhere, he also outlined four pertinent concerns that the government of the day needs to address with utmost urgency. They are:
- The movement control order (MCO) that is put in place should be more targeted in specific areas while areas which are not affected should be left out. This is to minimise the disruption to economic activities.
- More must be done to assist poor and vulnerable citizens to cope with the current hardship of life.
- The Government must be extra careful in the procurement of safe and effective vaccines while ensuring they are suitable for tropical climate.
- The Government has to do more to bridge the digital divide given many rural areas still do not have internet access to facilitate online teaching.
By : Cheah Chor Sooi – FOCUS MALAYSIA