Saturday, July 09, 2016

Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamad should advise the PM and the Cabinet to declassify the Auditor-General’s Report on 1MDB

I am extremely disappointed that Deputy Home Minister, Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamad had called on the Police to investigate Sarawak Report, which has successfully procured a copy of the Auditor-General’s (AG) Report on 1MDB for breach of the Official Secrets Act (OSA).

The exposé is a feat even I could not achieve because the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Chairman Datuk Hasan Arifin has ruled that even PAC members could not retain a copy of the document.  This is despite the fact that we have been specifically cleared to access the Report.  I could only read the Report during the PAC meetings or upon request at the Parliamentary office.

This particular disappointment with Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamad was because he was formerly the Chairman of the PAC prior to his “promotion” as the Deputy Home Minister.  Of all people, Datuk Nur Jazlan should understand the concept of accountability and transparency which he preached during his tenure as the Chairman.

In fact, Datuk Nur Jazlan often led the line to demand answers from 1MDB, gave clear instructions to the Auditor-General on the information to be acquired and even concluded that the mysterious key-man, Low Taek Jho be summoned to testify before the PAC.  His stand on the matter was clear and can be read in the published Hansards as well as his press conferences.

What has caused the 180 degrees about turn in his position on the investigation on the single largest financial scandal in Malaysia’s history since his appointment to the front bench?

His endorsement for the Police to pursue the whistle-blowers would unfortunately, also destroy all the goodwill and reputation he has gained over the past few years as one of the few UMNO politicians with some trace of integrity.

Malaysians would have pinned hopes on him to carry on his crusades for better accountability in the administration of government subsidiaries.  In this case, we would have hoped that he would at the very least attempt to convince the Prime Minister, Dato’ Seri Najib Razak and his Cabinet that the right thing to do under the circumstances is to “declassify” the Report as it ought to have been.

Datuk Nur Jazlan must make it clear to the Prime Minister that with the Report already leaked, there is no choice for the Government but to declassify the Report to save its own credibility and reputation.  What is the point of keeping it a secret any more now that it has been leaked?

Otherwise, Datuk Nur Jazlan and the Malaysian Government will be seen as clearly attempting to cover up the enormous scandal to protect the wrong doers in the debt-ridden state-owned company.

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