End impunity for the powerful, reform institutions

– Josie Fernandez
The Malaysian Insider
July 18, 2013

Corruption with impunity is undermining democracy, socio-economic advancement and the independence of Parliament, state and legislature in Malaysia.

Corruption with impunity is a major challenge stifling efforts to reform institutions such as the Elections Commission, Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission, the Police and Political Parties. Election fraud is another indicator that impunity has been institutionalized.

Reforms proposed by civil society groups such as Transparency International Malaysia to restructure the Elections Commission, for a more independent MACC and for removal of laws that curtail the independence of the media have been ignored by the government.

Recent surveys such as the Transparency International Global Corruption Barometer (GCB) 2013 results have shown that approximately 70 percent of the Malaysian Public does not have faith in the government. Results from the GCB 2013 reveal that the public perceive the police to be the most corrupt, followed closely by political parties, civil servants and the Parliament/Legislature.

Bad behavior in Parliament is yet another strong indicator that impunity is the driver of such behavior. Often the prosecution of political and public officials is hindered by collusion, interference of government bureaus, personal influence and institutional pressures.

There has been little progress made into the investigations of allegations of corruption against political leaders such as the Sarawak Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud. In Sarawak actions have not been taken against civil servants failing to appear as witnesses in native customary rights (NCR) land cases. This is yet another example of impunity. (A recent case in point is the Long Terawan lawsuit in Miri, Sarawak involving an NCR case filed by members of the Berawan Community of Long Terawan Mulu. The Sarawak government had taken the land to build an airstrip and a road for a hotel affiliated with the Mulu National Park.)

Freedom from punishment for the powerful is a sign of a bad government. Everyone should be equal before the law.

Reforms can be affected through the passing of appropriate laws to deal with the issue of corruption with impunity. In the United Kingdom, public officials can be subjected to a judicial review at the discretion of individuals who feel the official acted outside of his authority or engaged in an illegal or unjust action.

To restore public confidence that the government is committed to the fight against corruption, it must end impunity for the powerful. – July 18, 2013

  1. #1 by yhsiew on Friday, 19 July 2013 - 9:01 am

    Corruption will continue to plague the country if the government refuses to end impunity for the rich and powerful in the fight against corruption. Also, a double standard system in which “big fishes” are spared and “small fishes” are prosecuted will put the government in a very bad light.

  2. #2 by lee tai king (previously dagen) on Friday, 19 July 2013 - 9:08 am

    ///Everyone should be equal before the law.///

    Agreed. Everyone. Well, except GOD. Yeah. And the GOD of all gods and the grand master of the universe – umno – is above the law. Way above the law. In fact umno is so powerful and so mighty that it could even bend the path of light, cross the passage of time and command the collapse of a dimension in our universe.

  3. #3 by Winston on Friday, 19 July 2013 - 11:51 am

    The fake indelible ink has bought the ruling party another five years.
    Now, they are proposing a biometric method for elections.
    This will also go the way of the “indelible” ink.
    Because they must have found a way to circumvent the efficacy of the biometric system.
    Otherwise, they wouldn’t have proposed it!
    It doesn’t pay to do anything to jeopardise the future of their political masters.

  4. #4 by yhsiew on Friday, 19 July 2013 - 9:28 pm

    Politicians and those who helm the country should take a lesson from Detroit (US), which recently filed for bankruptcy, as to how corruption, mismanagement, exodus of manpower and persistent deficits could ruin a mighty motor-city and bring a once prosperous society to naught.

    Detroit becomes largest US city to file for bankruptcy

  5. #5 by worldpress on Saturday, 20 July 2013 - 4:02 pm

    Wrong is wrong, Right is right

    How can EC decline to recheck registered voter listing when you found the listing is not accurate

    Are this action consider criminal act defence wrong doing and scam?

    What kind of Malaysia government is…EC encourage and defence problematic registered voter list lead to SCAM, cheat and lie?

    What is this current Malaysia gov motol HONESTY or DISHONESTY?

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