Em­power MACC to pros­e­cute, MP urges

The Borneo Post (Sabah) - - FRONT PAGE -

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Cor­rup­tion Com­mis­sion (MACC) must be vested with pros­e­cu­to­rial pow­ers, said a fed­eral law­maker af­ter it re­vealed that its bid to charge a for­mer chief min­is­ter met a dead-end at the At­tor­ney Gen­eral’s Cham­bers (AGC).

Bukit Gel­u­gor MP Ramkarpal Singh urged fel­low law­mak­ers to con­sider amend­ing the MACC Act to em­power the agency to pros­e­cute cor­rup­tion in­de­pen­dently of the at­tor­ney gen­eral (AG), and a con­sti­tu­tional amend­ment to re­move the AG’s power to over­rule such charges.

Cit­ing the pre­vi­ous fail­ure to charge for­mer prime min­is­ter Datuk Seri Na­jib Razak and for­mer Sabah chief min­is­ter Tan Sri Musa Aman, he said these showed a press­ing need to en­hance the MACC’s pow­ers to pur­sue and pros­e­cute the cor­rupt.

“In the cir­cum­stances, it is im­per­a­tive that leg­isla­tive re­forms are in­tro­duced at once to the MACC Act, 2009 to give the MACC the power to in­sti­tute prose­cu­tions on its own with­out the need to ob­tain the con­sent of the pub­lic pros­e­cu­tor which is the cur­rent po­si­tion as man­dated by sec­tion 58 of the MACC Act, 2009.

“Ar­ti­cle 145(3) of the Fed­eral Con­sti­tu­tion would also have to be amended with a two-thirds ma­jor­ity in Par­lia­ment to re­strict the AG’s power to dis­con­tinue such prose­cu­tions ini­ti­ated by the MACC to avoid a sit­u­a­tion where a pros­e­cu­tion by the MACC is dis­con­tin­ued by the AG at his ab­so­lute dis­cre­tion,” he said in a state­ment.

The con­sti­tu­tional amend­ment would re­quire the ap­proval of two-thirds of Par­lia­ment as well as bi­par­ti­san sup­port, but Ramkarpal said he saw no rea­son why the Op­po­si­tion would block this.

The DAP Na­tional Le­gal Bureau chair­man said he will pro­pose the amend­ment in the De­wan Rakyat when it re­sumes next week.

Ear­lier this week, the MACC re­vealed that it had com­pleted in­ves­ti­ga­tions on graft al­le­ga­tions against the for­mer Sabah chief min­is­ter in 2012 and handed the in­ves­ti­ga­tion pa­pers to the AGC.

It said the AG at the time, Tan Sri Ab­dul Gani Patail, did not pur­sue this as the agency had a pol­icy not to pros­e­cute cases re­lated to po­lit­i­cal do­na­tions.

Musa, who is still Sun­gai Sibuga as­sem­bly­man, was charged on Novem­ber 5 with 35 counts of graft for re­ceiv­ing a to­tal of US$63.3 mil­lion (RM263 mil­lion) in ex­change for log­ging con­tracts that were is­sued be­tween 2004 and 2008.

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