Cor­rup­tion the root cause of il­le­gal ac­tiv­i­ties

New Straits Times - - Letters -

THE Malaysian Anti-Cor­rup­tion Com­mis­sion’s (MACC) suc­cess in ex­pos­ing var­i­ous abuses of power and cor­rup­tion cases in re­cent weeks should re­ceive the thumbs up from all of us.

It proves that the MACC is de­ter­mined to en­sure that the pub­lic sec­tor is free from cor­rup­tion by 2020, as pledged by MACC Chief Com­mis­sioner Datuk Dzulk­i­fli Ah­mad.

Dur­ing the In­ter­na­tional An­tiCor­rup­tion Day cel­e­bra­tion in De­cem­ber last year, Dzulk­i­fli said MACC would elim­i­nate cor­rup­tion in the pub­lic and pri­vate sec­tors and gov­ern­ment-linked com­pa­nies in three years.

Re­cent ar­rests made by MACC have ex­posed how those given the re­spon­si­bil­ity and trust were in­volved in power abuse and graft.

It was dis­turb­ing to read about the ar­rest of 11 Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cers and staff in Sarawak re­cently to help in the in­ves­ti­ga­tion of cor­rup­tion cases in­volv­ing il­le­gal im­mi­grants who worked in the state.

At the same time, MACC had also ar­rested dozens of en­force­ment per­son­nel, in­clud­ing po­lice, for al­legedly ac­cept­ing bribes from il­le­gal gam­bling and mas­sage cen­tres that are also as­so­ci­ated with vice ac­tiv­i­ties. The col­lec­tion of branded items seized from the sus­pects showed that they were blinded by greed and were will­ing to ne­glect their re­spon­si­bil­ity, be­tray their trust and put the coun­try’s safety and se­cu­rity at risk.

It seems that ex­po­sures made by the me­dia have failed to de­ter those in­volved in the il­le­gal ac­tiv­i­ties at gam­bling and vice premises, which are mush­room­ing all over the coun­try.

The lat­est ar­rests have proven that we are fac­ing a sit­u­a­tion as in the Malay proverb, “Hara­p­kan pa­gar, pa­gar makan padi”, which means that the en­force­ment per­son­nel we trust has be­trayed us for ma­te­rial gains.

We should ac­cept the fact that cor­rup­tion is the root cause for var­i­ous prob­lems, in­clud­ing vice, il­le­gal gam­bling and smug­gling ac­tiv­i­ties, drugs and power abuse.

It is im­pos­si­ble for the au­thor­i­ties to elim­i­nate all these il­le­gal ac­tiv­i­ties if the en­force­ment agen­cies have greedy peo­ple who are will­ing to ac­cept bribes.

Such an ir­re­spon­si­ble act will de­feat the pur­pose of the en­force­ment agen­cies and make peo­ple lose their con­fi­dence in law en­force­ment.

We have no other op­tions but to fully sup­port MACC’s ef­fort to elim­i­nate cor­rup­tion and those who are in­volved in cor­rupt prac­tices must be brought to book.

I also agree with MACC’s ac­tion to con­fis­cate all the pro­ceeds of cor­rup­tion and re­turn them to the gov­ern­ment. Such an ac­tion is nec­es­sary as it could help stop the cul­prits from us­ing il­le­gal pro­ceeds to es­cape the law or al­low­ing their fam­ily or syn­di­cate mem­bers who are still at large to en­joy the pro­ceeds.

In­tegrity among pub­lic ser­vants is cru­cial as it is re­lated to the ad­min­is­tra­tion, de­vel­op­ment and se­cu­rity of our coun­try.

The pub­lic and non-gov­ern­men­tal or­gan­i­sa­tions should also play their role in com­bat­ing cor­rup­tion by lodg­ing a re­port with MACC if they have in­for­ma­tion on graft and power abuse.

We have to re­mem­ber that MACC’s ef­fort to elim­i­nate cor­rup­tion in the coun­try will never suc­ceed if we do not play our role to fight graft ef­fec­tively with­out fear or favour.

TAN SRI LEE LAM THYE,

Se­nior vice-chair­man, Malaysian Crime Preven­tion Foun­da­tion, Kuala Lumpur

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