Press Statement by Charles Santiago in Klang on Saturday, 1st November 2008:

Institutionalize accountability, transparency & good governance in PKNS

More disturbing facts have emerged following the ruckus caused by the appointment of a Chinese to head PKNS.

Although I strongly re-iterate that merit should be the basis of any appointment as opposed to race and religion, the person chosen to head any organization must also be accountable, transparent, and corrupt free.

The Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, had raised serious concerns alluding to billions of Ringgit which is lost due to poor management, corruption and nepotism within the state economic development bodies.

I once again call upon the Anti-Corruption Agency to initiate an investigation into the alleged corrupt practices in PKNS involving senior management.

We, in Pakatan Rakyat, made a pledge to the people to operate on the fundamentals of transparency, accountability and good governance. We must make good of that promise by ensuring that credible candidates are tasked to head state-owned entities.

There is an urgent need for a public inquiry on the funds lost and mismanaged. Accounts need to be audited, projects suspected of crony appointments must be re-evaluated and if necessary canceled and culprits need to be identified and punished.

The Selangor state government needs to put in place a transparent and accountable mechanism as part of the overhaul system. This work should be entrusted to a specially identified group with the support of audit companies and NGOs such as Transparency International.

We, in Pakatan Rakyat, need to institutionalize accountability, transparency and good governance in the way state economic development corporations are organized and run.

* Charles Santiago, MP for Klang