Pakatan backs government’s bid to give MACC more power, says Guan Eng
The Bagan MP also challenged the prime minister to direct members of his administration, including deputy ministers, to publicly declare their assets, as is already being done in Penang.
“The prime minister should stop playing general election games but prove his sincerity about fighting corruption by publicly declaring the assets of Cabinet members and amend the Federal Consitution now to reform the MACC,” Lim said, referring to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.
“If he were truly serious, he could easily have consulted PR on this matter. PR have no hesitation in giving support. There have been many occasions where PR has cast aside political partisanship for the public interest,” the first-term Penang chief minister added.
Najib pledged yesterday to give more freedom to the MACC in the appointment of its officers if his BN coalition wins two-thirds control of Parliament in the next general election.
The BN won the right to govern in the 2008 general elections but lost its customary two-thirds hold on Parliament. Its mandate expires in March next year.
The PM had also said that the constitution needed to be changed to form an anti-corruption Service Commission with the power to appoint and sack members of the MACC.
Lim (picture) noted that currently, MACC officers were appointed through the public services commission.
Other PR lawmakers told The Malaysian Insider yesterday that they welcomed any steps to improve the efficiency and accountability of the anti-graft body, and that they will be open to debate the matter in Parliament at its next sitting.
PAS central committee member Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa stressed that past amendments to the purpose and function of the MACC had already “empowered” the commission, and that the real problem was ensuring the anti-graft body was free from “political interference”.
“You don’t need two thirds. Issue is not about strengthening, but more of allowing autonomy to MACC to carry out its duties,” he told The Malaysian Insider.
“Pakatan Rakyat has agreed to reform measures for the MACC, based on proposals by the advisory panel,” the PAS leader added.
When contacted, Malaysian Bar president Lim Chee Wee also said there should be no reason why MPs “across the floor” would not vote in favour of amendments to the Federal Constitution if it was done in the interest of the nation.