MACC is beginning to look like playing politics after escalating the investigation on the alleged white collar crime involving Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak, by using the Panel of Operational Review to look at the case which Attorney General Tan Sri Apandi Ali decided to close the matter.
The Star story:
Wednesday, 27 January 2016 | MYT 9:22 PM
MACC: Nothing unusual about referral of A-G decision
BY RAHMAH GHAZALI
PETALING JAYA: There is nothing unusual about referring the Attorney-General’s decision on SRC International and the RM2.6bil cases to two independent panels, said Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commisson (MACC).
In a statement, MACC strategic communications director Datuk Rohaizad Yaacob (pic) that the move should not be construed as rejecting the decision made by Attorney-General Tan Sri Apandi Ali.
“I would like to stress that our decision to refer to Operational Evaluation Panel (PPO) was a procedure before closing any case.
“Therefore, it is normal for this procedure to take place and should not be translated that we rejected the decision made by the Attorney-General,” he said in a statement, Wednesday.
Earlier, MACC said that its top management had decided to refer the case to the PPO an independent body set up by the Government to monitor the MACC, as well as another special panel to be appointed.
This has given the impression that the anti-graft body chose to refuse the A-G’s directives to close the case and cease investigations, as there was no criminal offence committed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
However, MACC special operations director Datuk Bahri Mohd Zin had said that the commission would “most likely” consider appealing the A-G to reconsider its decision.
But Rohaizad said any statements made by any individuals do not represent MACC’s official stance.
It is normal business day for law enforcement agencies such as MACC and the Police to have their investigations asked to be closed after the AG has gone through the case and files.
It is learnt that an MACC special panel consist of five prominent Malaysians reviewed the investigation papers on the USD690million donation allegedly credited into PM Najib’s personal account in early 2013.
They have given their views and there on, MACC submitted the investigation papers (IP) on the eve of the 2016 New Year.
When WSJ broke the story in July, the Opposition, Neo Con Jewish controlled foreign media and PM Najib’s detractors from within were quick to quip that the former is immersed in corruption practices, arisen from mismanagement of 1MDB.
AG Apandi when dismissing the case, cited that the Royal Saudi family donated the large sum of money without any attachment to it.
Never the less, Malaysians were given the impression that MACC was not pleased with AG’s decision and would look avenues for a recourse.
Wednesday, 27 January 2016 | MYT 9:51 AM
MACC likely to appeal A-G’s decision
BY RAHMAH GHAZALI
KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) will likely appeal the Attorney-General’s decision absolving Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak of criminal offences over a RM2.6bil donation and RM4bil Government loan in 2011 to SRC International.
MACC special operations director Datuk Bahri Mohd Zin (pic) said late Tuesday that it was “most likely” that the Commission would consider appealing the A-G to reconsider its decision in the “straightforward case.”
Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali earlier absolved Najib of any criminal wrongdoing in relation to the two investigations.
Apandi said he found no evidence to show that the donation was “an inducement or reward for doing or forbearing to do anything in relation to his capacity as Prime Minister.”
Bahri was one of the MACC directors that was transferred to the Prime Minister’s Department on Aug 7, 2015. He was later reinstated to his original post three days later.
Apandi had on Tuesday said that documents showed US$681mil (RM2.08bil) was transferred to Najib’s personal accounts between March 22 and April 10, 2013 from the Saudi royal family, and had returned US$620mil (RM2.03bil) in August 2013 as the funds had not been put to use.
On the SRC International case, Apandi said there was no evidence that Najib had abused his position during a Cabinet meeting that approved a Government guarantee on the loan from Retirement Fund Inc, a pension fund.
That caused he uneasiness in many quarters and inadvertently saw the MACC is trying to mutiny against AG, who is His Majesty’s Public Prosecutor and has the constitutional power to brought forth a criminal charge against any persons.
A member of the MACC Special Panel earlier mentioned on the alleged RM2.6billion donation and SRC International before it was submitted to the AG on 31 December 2015 is former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan.
In his opinion, AG has the “Absolute right” to make the decision he announced two days ago.
The Star story:
Thursday, 28 January 2016 | MYT 3:55 PM
Panels urge MACC to ‘engage’ A-G over decision to close cases
BY RAHMAH GHAZALI
PUTRAJAYA: Two oversight review panels of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) have advised that the commission “engage” the Attorney-General (A-G) over the decision to close the investigations into SRC International Sdn Bhd and the RM2.6bil political donation.
Former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan, who sits on MACC’s Operation Review Panel and Special Panel, refused to confirm nor deny if this meant that the MACC should not close the case as instructed by Attorney General Tan Sri Mohamed Apandi Ali.
Musa clarified that the panel “can merely advise the MACC” to communicate with the A-G over the decision to close the two cases.
“MACC has five independent panels that look after them, and we have no authority to engage with the A-G, what we can do is to advise, as our views represent the people,” Musa said after a five-hour meeting at the MACC headquarters on Thursday.
Musa said, as far as he was concerned, Apandi, as the Attorney-General, had the “absolute power” to conduct prosecutions.
“For me, we have to respect the decision of the A-G because his decisions are absolute.
“But the A-G also needs to satisfy the public on his decision. That’s why we advise the MACC to engage with the A-G,” he said.
On Tuesday, Apandi said documents showed that US$681mil (RM2.08bil) was transferred to Najib’s personal accounts between March 22 and April 10, 2013 from the Saudi royal family. Najib returned US$620mil (RM2.03bil) in August 2013 as the funds were not used.
On SRC International, Apandi said there was no evidence that Najib had abused his position during a Cabinet meeting that approved a Government guarantee on the loan from Retirement Fund Inc, a pension fund.
On Wednesday, the MACC said that it would be referring the A-G’s decision to close the cases to two independent review panels.
Earlier, special operations director Datuk Bahri Mohd Zin had said that the MACC would “most likely” appeal the A-G to reconsider the decision.
However the MACC Chief Commissioner was quick to react against this.
The media statement by MACC Chief Commissioner:
MACC IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY UNAUTHORIZED STATEMENT
Further to media reports today, I would like to state once again that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is in no way disputing or challenging the Attorney General’s clearance of the cases against the Prime Minister.
As stated yesterday, our referral to MACC’s Operations Review Panel is a standard operating procedure as part of the process of closing any case.
For the sake of clarity, the Attorney General’s powers over all criminal proceedings are conferred on him by Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution. These powers are absolute and cannot be challenged by any authority.
Further to media reports today alleging MACC personnel have been giving unauthorized briefings to media and making various allegations, let me be very clear: if this is true, it will not be tolerated and action will be taken. I am instructing for a police report to be filed so this matter can be independently investigated. MACC officers must uphold the highest ethical standards and will be held to account for the oaths of office that they have sworn.
Going forward, no statement by any individual should be represented by media as the official position of MACC on these cases unless it has been released by MACC’s official Strategic Communication Division upon my approval.
TAN SRI ABU KASSIM MOHAMED
MALAYSIAN ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION
28 JANUARY 2016
It is high time that Chief Commissioner Abu Kassim do ‘spring cleaning’ within his own domain and weed out those senior MACC officers who have the political slant and personal opinion hindering their professional conduct.
It is important for MACC to engage the public but they also have to remain professional and strategic in what they share, because even official statements could be politically adulterated.
Not withstanding MACC only, this happened too many times and the current scenario in Malaysia is already causing a lot of confusion, uptightness and perception abuse and manipulation of the truth.
All these in sundry does not help the nation to come together and weather off this current global economic storm, which should be the priority of all. Never before over politicking is such gross ad nauseam.