The Metalex affair

The DAP Organising Secretary, Mr. Lim Kit Siang, today issued the following statement (18.3.69):

It is clear that the Director of Anti-Corruption Agency, Inche Harun bin Hashim, had failed to make an independent and thorough investigation last Saturday when I first raised the question of Mr. Khaw Khai Boh being one and the same time a Cabinet Minister and a director of Metalex (M)Co. in 1963, 1964 and 1965, before announcing the result.

Within an hour of my press conference, Inche Harun had already announced the completion of his investigations, and described as ‘unfounded’ the suggestion that Mr. Khaw was a director of Metalex (M) Co. when he was Cabinet Minister.

But Inche Harun conspicuously ignored the most vital part of my statement at the press conference – although he sent a representative to my press conference and took copies of my written statement. And it was this: that my information came from the Registry of Company records and from annual return of the Metalex (M) Co.

Any independent and thorough investigation must involve an inquiry into the Registry of Company records pertaining to this matter. But no, Inche Harun did nothing of the sort. It was only after I had pressed for an explanation for this seeming discrepancy the very next day that Inche Harun instituted ‘further investigations’, and found that it was the company’s mistake in continuing to list Mr. Khaw as a director although he had already resigned.

What investigations did Inche Harun carry out which enabled him to announce an hour after my press conference that there was absolutely no foundation in the suggestion that Mr. Khaw was one and the same time a Minister and Director of Metalex, when his agency had not investigated into the Registry of Company records?

Was Inche Harun’s statement last Saturday based solely on an assurance from Mr. Khaw Kai Boh himself?

Inche Harun’s handling of this case is very unsatisfactory, and will further confirm public suspicion that the Anti-Corruption Agency does not have real powers.

I am still waiting for the result of the Agency’s investigation into the allocation of hawker’s sites at Jalan Petaling, Kuala Lumpur, during the pre-Chinese New Year festive season, where 16 best hawker’s sites were reserved from open balloting. Inche Harun said three weeks ago on receipt of my complaint that the results would be known in a day or two.

Three weeks have passed, but there is still no result yet.

I have met an Agency representative on this matter, and I must confess that I am shocked at the way the Agency is handling this complaint. But I shall reserve my comments until the outcome of the Agency’s investigation are known.

Unless the Agency can convince the public that it is capable and fully empowered to make independent and thorough investigations without fear or favour from whatever quarters, then the Anti-Corruption Agency and its Director will have only themselves to blame if the Malaysian people regard them merely as an Alliance election stunt to deceive the people.