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The Prime Minister must explain why he did not order fresh investigations or interview the complainant in July 2006 when serious allegations are made against Zulkipli Mat Noor by former Sabah ACA director Mohamad Ramli Manan
by Lim Guan Eng
(Petaling Jaya, Saturday): DAP expressed disappointment and disillusionment at Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's explanations that Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) director-general Zulkipli Mat Noor has been investigated twice before and cleared of all allegations. The investigations were carried out in 2001 when he was appointed as ACA director-general in 2001 and again in 2005 when his term was extended to 2008.
Ramli had filed the complaint on July 4 2006 to former inspector-general of police Mohd Bakri Omar last year and copies sent to Abdullah, the attorney-general, auditor-general and civil service director-general. Ramli had accused Zulkipli of illegal improprieties:
DAP expressed surprise that Abdullah only wants to carry out a thorough investigation now but not in July 2006 when he received the letter of complaint by Ramli. Abdullah should be reminded that these serious allegations are not made by ordinary persons but by none other than a former Sabah ACA Director himself.
If Abdullah is serious about his anti-corruption campaign, establishing integrity and good governance, then he should have be pro-active and taken the initiative to investigate when the complaint was made in July 2006 and not now when the matter was publicly exposed. Such tardiness and delayed reaction does not reflect well on his commitment to fight corruption and abuse of power.
Perhaps this is why corruption has not gone better but worse under Abdullah. According to Transparency International, the Malaysia was ranked No. 39 in 2005 in the Corruption Perceptions Index before slipping to No. 44 in 2006. When Abdullah took over as Prime Minister on October 1 2004 , Malaysia was ranked even higher No. 37. Instead of the expected gradual improvement to No. 30, Malaysia has slipped 7 places down instead to No. 44.
The Prime Minister must explain why he did not order fresh investigations or interview the complainant in July 2006 when serious allegations are made against Zulkipli Mat Noor by Ramli. In view that the allegations were made by a senior ACA officer, Zulkipli has no moral authority to head the ACA. To save the Prime Minister further embarrassment for his "inexplicable and inelegant inaction", Zulkipli should act honourably by stepping aside until all probes into the allegations are completed.
Preventing crime from spiralling out of control and ensuring safe neighbourhoods should be a national priority following the 15.7% rise in the national crime index of 198,622 in 2006 from 171,604 in 2005
Malaysians are sick of hearing excuses or promises of adding 60,000 police personnel when there is no action or marked improvement in public safety. The burglary of the home of former CID director Datuk Fauzi Shaari in Shah Alam on 13.2.2007 following the recent murder by robbers of former Chief Police Officer of Penang and ex-Bukit Bendera Member of Parliament Datuk Albert Mah in his home in Petaling Jaya, has only highlighted the seriousness of rampant criminal elements threatening our basic right to work, study and live safely.
Such cases only shows how unsafe ordinary citizens are when the police can not even protect former senior police officers from ending up as victims of wanton crime. When Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi took over on October 31 2003 as Internal Security Minister, the 2003 national crime index was 156,315. Three years later the national crime index has risen by 27% or 42,307 cases to 198,622 in 2006. Has the Prime Minister run out of ideas to stop crime spiralling out of control with the 27% rise in the national crime index from 156,315 in 2003 when Abdullah took office to 198,622 in 2006?
For how long must we see students get killed on the streets for their handphones, slashed with parangs for RM 2, and even openly carting away the entire ATM machines from banks which are supposed to be very well-guarded. The BN government should make it a national priority to prevent crime from spiraling out of control and ensuring safe neighbourhoods following the 15.7% rise in the national crime index of 198,622 in 2006 from 171,604 crimes reported in 2005.
Failure of good governance has only showed how a bad government with unlimited powers is even more fearsome than a ravenous tiger. The people must be empowered to overcome poor governance. Only by strengthening opposition parties against BN can we return power to the people.
* Lim Guan Eng, Secretary-General of DAP