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Friday, May 20, 2022

First person charged under Whistleblower Act acquitted


Wafiy Abd Aziz (left) and lawyer Baljit Singh outside the sessions court after he was acquitted and discharged.

KUALA LUMPUR: The sessions court here today acquitted and discharged the first person charged under the Whistleblower Protection Act 2010 (Act 711).

Judge Suzana Hussain ordered former Education Malaysia Global Services (EMGS) deputy CEO Wafiy Abd Aziz, 37, to be freed without calling for his defence after finding that the prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case against him.

“After hearing the witnesses from the defence, prosecution and relevant authorities, the court finds that the prosecution had failed to prove a prima facie case against the accused.

“The accused is ordered to be acquitted and discharged,” she said.

The court ordered the bail of RM15,000 to be returned to the accused.

Wafiy was charged in September 2020 with causing the sacking of a whistleblower who exposed his alleged misconduct to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

He was alleged to have done so by inciting then EMGS chairman Abdul Rahman Shariff to sign the “termination of employment” document against the whistleblower in retaliation for exposing his alleged misconduct to MACC in January 2020.

Seventeen witnesses had been called, including Rahman and then EMGS chief executive officer Shahibuddin Shariff. EMGS is a company owned by the higher education ministry,

Baljit Singh, who represented Wafiy, said the ruling proved that his client had not incited Rahman to sack the whistleblower, as alleged.

“From the case hearing, it’s clear that the investigation conducted by MACC was flawed. My client never committed the offence and the court had clearly seen this based on the statements.

“The whistleblowing process under the Whistleblower Protection Act itself is disorganised, so maybe they (MACC) will fix this,” he said. - FMT

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