Speech by Parliament Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the Perak DAP State Convention in Ipoh on Sunday, August 15, 1993 at 10a.m.
DAP calls for a special Parliamentary meeting to pass a new law on corruption to elevate the Anti-Corruption Agency into an Anti-Corruption Commission with expanded powers to fight corruption
The past few months have seen a rising tide against corruption and money politics in many Asian countries, which reached a new climax last month when the 38-year uninterrupted rule of Japan’s Liberal Democratic Government (LDP) was broken and LDP was thrown out of power.
This revolt against corruption particularly in Thailand, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and Japan has continued unabated.
On Wednesday, for instance, the Philippines Senate voted to restore the death penalty and, for the first time, prescribed it for officials who take bribes or steal public money.
On Thursday, in South Korea, President Kim Young-Sam, in pushing his no-holds barred drive against corruption, influence-peddling and tax evasion which he launched since he took office in February, banned the widespread use of “false name accounts” in banks, financial institutions and the stock market.
Until now, any South Korean could walk into a bank or a brokerage and open an account in any name whatever and it was virtually impossible for tax authorities or anti-corruption investigators to trace ill-gotten gains.
Under Kim-Yong Sam’s older, up to 60 per cent of funds held in banks and securities house accounts by those who do not identify themselves within two months can be confiscated.
Although Malaysia does not have “false name account” in banks, financial institutions and the stock market, we have the “nominee accounts” and “nominee companies” which hide the real identify of the account holders, and which are also being used to evade tax authorities and anti-corruption investigations.
Many political leaders in Malaysia use these “nominee accounts” and “nominee companies” as vehicles for their corruption and ill-gotten gains apart form having unnumbered accounts in foreign countries like Switzerland.
DAP calls for calling of a special meeting of Parliament to pass a new law on corruption and money politics.
This new anti-corruption law will elevate the status and powers of the Anti-Corruption Agency from a department in the Prime Minister’s Office into an Anti-Corruption Commission answerable only to Parliament.
A Parliamentary Committee on Corruption would also be established, headed by an Opposition MP, to oversee and monitor the Anti-Corruption Commission which should submit annual reports to Parliament to be debated in the Dewan Rakyat.
DAP calls for a law to ban ‘nominee accounts’ and ‘nominee companies’ as an important strategy to fight corruption in Malaysia.
Furthermore, the new law against corruption which should be passed by the special meeting of Parliament should make the following provisions:
Emulate the example of the South Korean President’s ban on “false name” accounts by banning “nominee accounts” and “nominee companies” in banks, financial institutions and the stock market, requiring all the genuine holders to identity themselves and empowering the confiscation of the funds held in bank and securities house accounts which do not identify themselves within two months. This measure should be regarded as an important strategy to fight corruption in Malaysia.
Confiscation of ill-gotten gains and unusual wealth accumulated by political leaders and government servants which are completely disproportionate to their known sources of income;
Immediate suspension from office of Minister, Deputy Minister, Parliamentary Chief Minister or any Mentri Besar who have unusual wealth completely disproportionate to their known sources of income, as in the case of the Malacca Chief Minister, Tan Sri Rahim Tamby Cik; and
Emulate the “sunshine law” passed in Taiwan requiring top civil servants and political leaders, including all elected representatives, to publicly declare their family assets.
One of the first slogans of Dr. Mahathir when he became Prime Minister in 1981 is to have a ‘clean, efficient and trustworthy’ government. Now however, the slogan has been a completely forgotten and ignores.
Call on Tan Sri Zulkifli Mahmood to explain what happened to the ACA draft for a new corruption law
IN June 1992, when I met the ACA Director-General, Tan Sri Zulkigli Mahmood, I was told that the CA had finished a draft for a new corruption law with widened powers even to allow the CA to investigate into privatised entities like MAS, Telekom and Tenaga Nasional if there are corrupt practices.
He said the draft anti-corruption law which proposed enhanced penalties for corruption offences had been submitted to the Attorney-General for study and he hoped that the proposed new law on corruption could be tabled in Parliament by the end of year.
However, in Parliament last month, the Parliament Secretary to the Prime Minister’s Office, Othman Abdul claimed that the ACA had never submitted such a draft for a comprehensive anti-corruption law to the government.
I call on Tan Sri Zulkifli to explain what has happened to the ACA draft for a new corruption law to give widened powers to the ACA to fight corruption.
Has the ACA quietly withdrawn the proposed draft after it had been rejected by the Government.
Public confidence in the ACA will be greatly shaken if its draft for a new corruption law with greater powers to fight corruption can just disapear into thin air, without anybody knowing what has happened to it.
Attorney-General Tan Sri Abu Talib will owe Parliament and nation a full explanation to account for his decision if he rejects the recommendation of ACA and refuses to authorise prosecutions in connection with the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal
ACA will suffer an irreparable blow to its reputation if it fails its acid test in the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal.
In fact, I will go as far as saying that the ACA might just as well ‘close shop’ if its recommendation for action following its 16-month investigations into the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal is rejected by the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abu Talib.
Last week, the ACA Director-General Tan Sri Zulkifli Mahmood submitted the ACA report into the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal and its investigations into the MIC President and Minister for Energy, Telecommunications and Post, Datuk Seri. Samy Vellu to the Attorney-General.
The Malaysian public can safely conclude that the ACA is recommending action to be taken in connection with the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal, for there is no need for the ACA to submit any report to the Attorney-General if the ACA has decided that there is no case action in connection with the scandal.
If the Attorney-General rejects the recommendation of ACA and refuses to authorise any prosecution in connection with the MAIKA Telekom shares hijacking scandal, Tan Sri Abu Talib will owe the nation and parliament a full explanation and accounting for his decision.