Archive for August 20th, 2015

Did the new Attorney-General start off his tenure making a public statement which is far from the truth when he said that the purported corruption charge sheet against the Prime Minister was a fake?

The 2015 Sabah earthquake which struck Ranau with a magnitude of Richter 6.0 on 5th June lasted for 30 seconds, but it killed 18 people on Mount Kinabalu and caused some 90 aftershocks for the following next three weeks.

Similarly, the convulsions in the very sanctum of Federal government in Putrajaya in the last days of July, which saw the sacking of the Attorney-General and Deputy Prime Minister on 28th July and the arrests and harassment of top government officers in key institutions are still having their aftershocks – like yesterday’s sudden and abrupt transfer out of the Special Branch (SB) of the deputy director of the police intelligence agency, Datuk Abdul Hamid Bador to the Prime Minister’s Department reporting directly to the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak!

Abdul Hamid, who had been with the Police force for 37 years, was completely in the dark on the reasons for his abrupt transfer to the Prime Minister’s Office, reminiscent of the sudden transfer of two Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) directors, Bahri Mohd Zin (special operations division) and Rohaizad Yaakob (strategic communications) at the height of the recent stand-off between the Police and MACC over investigations into 1MDB and the RM2.6 billion Najib personal accounts, which also saw the most extraordinary solat hajat (special prayers) by MACC officers seeking divine intervention to allow MACC officers to carry out their anti-corruption duties.

Although the immediate and punitive transfer of Bahri and Rohaizad out of MACC to the Prime Minister’s Department had been cancelled because of adverse public reactions, penalties are being considered to punish the two MACC directors – which the powers-that-be should know could not be kept secret but would have to be fully explained and accounted for when Parliament reconvenes on October 19 for the 2015 Budget meeting.

And what of Abdul Hamid? Read the rest of this entry »


Sustaining strong institutions for clean gov’t

By Group of 25
Aug 19, 2015

COMMENT The success of the transformation and development of the Malaysian economy and its financial system has been primarily due to an empowering legal framework and sound institutions that operate on structured processes and with strong accountabilities, underpinned by a good governance framework.

Malaysia is indebted to visionary leaders whose dedicated focus and emphasis on building strong institutions have provided the foundation to support the development of the Malaysian economy.

These institutions continue to be led by strong leaders with a vision, a culture of integrity and competence which is imbued with values and virtues of hard work and prudence. This institutional framework has been the most important aspect of the growth and resilience of the economy today.

The ‘invisible hand’ does not work, by itself: it requires help from the rules of the game which govern how the market and its participants interact with each other. Institutional quality not only has a significantly positive impact upon income per capita, but it is also positively auto-correlated with the level of economic integration and trade (Rodrik & Subramanian 2003).

An improvement in institutional quality raises GDP directly, as well as promotes closer integration into the global economy, hence, enabling the economy to benefit from international trade and foreign investment flows. The auto-correlation also implies that higher national income and exposure to developed markets tend to lead to demand for improved institutions, thus enforcing a benign cycle. Read the rest of this entry »

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Why is Anifah Aman the only one out of 69 Ministers and Deputy Ministers who dare to declare that he has not received any funding from Najib’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts?

I commend the Foreign Minister Anifah Aman for declaring publicly that he has not received any funding from Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts in AmBank in 2013 for 13GE campaign.

Malaysians are intrigued why Anifah is the only one out of 69 Ministers and Deputy Ministers (Senators will have to be excluded) who dare to declare that the has not received any funding from Najib’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts for 13GE campaign.

Although my 96-hour notice to all Cabinet members to demonstrate that the Najib administration is serious when it proposed the National Consultative Council on Political Funding by individually declaring whether they had received any funding from Najib’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts for the 13 GE campaign, and if so, how much they received and spent, Cabinet Ministers could still declare whether they had been connected in any way to Najib’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts.

Since the DAP forum “Ke Mana Halatuju Malaysia” at Tropical Inn, Johor Baru on Monday night, I had named 18 Ministers and two deputy ministers and asked them to declare whether they had received funds from Najib’s RM2.6 billion personal accounts for the 13th General Election campaigning, and if so, to state the amounts.

Anifah is the only Cabinet Minister to respond and in the negative. Read the rest of this entry »


Najib Razak has too much power for Malaysia’s good

David Pilling
Financial Times
August 19, 2015

Once a model of development, the country’s reputation is sinking and so is that of the PM

The story is that in March 2013 one or more unnamed Middle Eastern donors transferred a total of nearly $700m into the personal account of Najib Razak, prime minister of Malaysia. The generous amount was a donation to be lavished on that year’s election campaign of the ruling United Malays National Organisation as Mr Najib saw fit. So sordid are the goings-on in Malaysia these days that, astonishingly, this is not the case being mounted against the prime minister. This is the case for Mr Najib’s defence. Malaysia’s widely lampooned prime minister is in such a deep, dark and money-stuffed hole that this is the version of events being promoted by his allies.

It was also the finding this month of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission. It turns out that an anonymous donation from a foreign benefactor is the least damaging explanation of how 2.6bn ringgit found its way into Mr Najib’s account. The prime minister has denied committing any wrongdoing or accepting money for personal gain.

If this is the positive take, the negative version is worse. Read the rest of this entry »