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Thursday, October 27, 2016

Pandikar: Former cabinet members may have broken oath of secrecy

Former cabinet members may have broken their oaths of secrecy when debating Budget 2017 in Parliament, said Dewan Rakyat speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia.
"What I heard the other day, is that the cabinet's decision had not been carried out. That is (secret) cabinet information," Pandikar told a press conference in the Parliament reception room today.
He said this when asked to comment whether the speeches by former deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin, ex-second finance minister Husni Hanadzlah, and ex-rural and regional development minister Shafie Apdal – all of which touched on 1MDB – had breached any House rules.
Pandikar had previously ruled that oral questions regarding the US Department of Justice lawsuits involving 1MDB need not be answered as they were sub judice.
However, he reiterated today that a ruling can only be made on debate matters when the MPs raise such issues.
Muhyiddin in his speech yesterday highlighted how the cabinet was not consulted on the formation of 1MDB, and was kept in the dark about its finances until the scandal broke out.
Husni, meanwhile, questioned why 1MDB was formed, and asked how its scandals would affect Malaysia's image.
Pandikar said in his experience of being a former minister himself, cabinet members had to take an oath of secrecy.
"We can't tell (secrets) to anyone. You can't whisper it to your wife at night," he said.

He said he knew a lot of secrets himself, but would not divulge them as those who break their oaths cast doubt on their own integrity and conduct.
He then reminded all lawmakers to keep in mind laws such as the Official Secrets Act and the Sedition Act, when speaking in the House.
"But sometimes when they get the microphone (in the House), some completely forget (about these laws)," he said. - Mkini

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