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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Reforming MACC: Tickled by PM’s two-thirds poser

The Malaysian Insider
Feb 29, 2012
FEB 29 — Aliran is tickled by the prime minister’s so-called pledge that he would give more bite to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) if voters hand the Barisan Nasional (BN) its coveted two-thirds parliamentary majority in the coming general election.
We are bemused because the federal government does not need a two-thirds majority to give teeth to the MACC as it does not require a constitutional amendment. What it does need, though, is political will and commitment from the federal government to ensure that the MACC is fully and fiercely independent.
A truly independent anti-corruption watchdog would not only catch “ikan bilis” but also the elusive “sharks”, many of whom have connections with people in high places. This also means that the MACC would be empowered to catch people at, for instance, ministerial level, if need be, without fear or favour.
Additionally, the “pledge” appears to be a thinly-veiled threat to voters, thereby making it sound more like a bargaining chip.
Anyway, even if the BN proposal to make the MACC truly independent requires that the existing law pertaining to the MACC be amended, we are confident that Pakatan Rakyat parliamentarians, who have been clamouring for an independent watchdog all along, would fully support the amendment.
Indeed, the rakyat as a whole would give their wholehearted support to this noble endeavour to put a stop to taxpayers’ money being abused by certain individuals for their narrow interests.
We therefore call upon the prime minister to take immediate steps to unleash the MACC before the next general election. — aliran.com

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