Selangor Journal
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim delivers his winding-up speech at the Parti Keadilan Rakyat (Keadilan) Special National Congress 2023 at Malawati Stadium, Shah Alam, on March 18, 2023. — Picture by HAFIZ OTHMAN/SELANGORKINI

Stern action against officers, ministers for abusing power

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 2 — Emphasising the importance of governance reforms to address public funds allocation wastages, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said stern action will be taken against any officer or minister involved in the abuse of power that causes the leakage of public funds.

The Prime Minister said he does not want the issue of corruption and governance to be taken lightly as it can cause losses to public funds, as frequently brought up in the previous Auditor-General’s Report (LKAN).

“We must take note of such experiences (abuse of power and leakages), and I want to stress that they cannot be repeated… because we have decided to take action as soon as it is confirmed.

“Officers, managers or ministers or anyone responsible must be dealt with; this also includes the unsatisfactory management of government company funds,” said Anwar in his capacity as Finance Minister, when wrapping up the debate on the Supply Bill 2024 at the policy level at the Dewan Rakyat today.

The government underwent several experiences, including the auditing warnings regarding procurement, as reported in the LKAN and Public Accounts Committee (PAC), including the 104 malfunctioning ventilators out of the 136 acquired during the Covid-19 pandemic and the RM505 million loss due to the 8.5 million expired vaccine doses.

In addition, a briefing by the Auditor-General regarding the results of the latest audit revealed the main findings were the loss of nearly RM700 million in public funds, involving the management of the national paddy planting programme; property development management of the Langkawi Development Authority (Lada); and firearm regulations under the Home Ministry.

When Muar MP Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman interjected to ask about allocations for Opposition MPs, Anwar said the matter had been assigned to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof, together with the committee that had been set up.

“… like how we used to do it during the time of Bera (Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob), there is engagement, negotiations have parameters, we negotiate, we move on. I did not budge from that stance. If you want to say tyrannical, it means that the previous government was tyrannical for not giving (allocations).

“Larut (MP Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin) also knows, negotiate. If it is reasonable, we have no qualms about approving it. To say that they do not have allocation is incorrect; the allocation for MPs is a decision to be made later, not a right; the right is to give enough allocation to the people, not MPs. The elected representatives have rights; they have salaries and allowances,” he said.

When Ketereh MP Datuk Khlir Mohd Nor interjected to ask about the adjustment to the military pension, Anwar said a study had been conducted with the Secretariat of the Public Service Department (JPA) for comprehensive coordination, including retired military veterans.

“So give me a little more time; I give an assurance that I do not want the JPA to push aside the application of any party; we ask together with the KSN (Chief Secretary to the Government) and KPPA (Director-General of Public Service) to conduct a comprehensive study to ensure that no one is left out,” he said.

On using Bahasa Melayu for official letters, Anwar said this only applies to all government departments and local companies, while international companies are excluded.

— Bernama

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