Is ACA Director-General suggesting that Anwar could be levelled  with scores or  even hundreds of  charges of corruption based on Muradís statutory declaration alleging that he had  amassed RM3 billion while in government through 20 "Master Accounts"?

DAP Federal Territory State Convention
Lim Kit Siang 

(Kuala Lumpur, Sunday):  The Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA)  has acted with unusual speed with regard to the statutory declaration by former Bank Negara assistant governor Datuk Abdul Murad Khalid dated 26th October 1999 that former Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had amassed a fortune of RM3 billion while in government through 20 "Master Accounts".

After Murad had made public his statutory declaration at a press conference on Thursday, 28th October 1999,  the Anti-Corruption Agency swung into immediate action and set up a special team to investigate  into Muradís allegations against Anwar headed by the agency's Investigations Division director Abdul Razak Idris.

Yesterday, ACA director-general Datuk Ahmad Zaki Hussin said that almost every paragraph of Muradís seven-page  statutory declaration contained some information on corruption or corruption practices.

Zaki  said: "We consider Muradís statement as information on corrupt practices and they are serious because they are in a sworn statement".
Is Zaki suggesting that based on Muradís  20-paragraph statutory declaration, Anwar could be levelled  with scores or  even hundreds of  charges of corruption?

It is most astounding that the ACA director-general is prepared to accept Muradís statutory declaration as sufficient  prima facie evidence to institute anti-corruption investigations against  Anwar, and even to plan to go globe-trotting to investigate Muradís allegations on the US-based Asia-Pacific Policy Centre.

However, the ACA is not prepared to accord the  same or  even greater weight to the four police reports lodged by Anwar on corruption and abuses of power in the highest levels of government, naming the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, the first Finance Minister, Tun Daim Zainuddin, the Minister for International Trade and Industry, Datuk Paduka Rafidah Aziz, the Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohtar Abdullah and Deputy Public Prosecutor Datuk Gani Patail and former Malacca Chief Minister Tan Sri Rahim Tamby Cik, even though Anwar had backed up his police reports with documentary evidence.

While I should be welcoming and commending Zaki and ACA for their  unwonted speed in  responding and investigating  allegations of corruption in high political places, its independence, professionalism and integrity comes under question when they seem to be playing to the tune of the Barisan Nasional government  leadership in its 13-month political vendetta against Anwar.

Once the ACA acts synchronously with the Barisan Nasional leadership, serving its pre-election  agenda to eliminate Anwar Ibrahim as a political threat to the Barisan Nasional, then ACA loses all its credibility and is seen only as another Barisan Nasional tool to make the next general election the "dirtiest" in the nationís history.

Malaysians are entitled to ask why the ACA is making daily statements about investigations into Anwar on the basis of Muradís statutory declarations, when the ACA had not dared to say anything about investigations into Mahathir, Daim, Rafidah Aziz and  Rahim Tamby Cik based on Anwarís police reports supported with documentary proof?

Why is the ACA showing such public zeal to pursue investigations against Anwar by making daily statements, which is completely lacking when it comes to Mahathir, Daim, Rafidah Aziz and  Rahim Tamby Cik?  What makes Muradís statutory declaration more believable to ACA as compared to  Anwarís police reports supported by documentary evidence?

The ACA is not meant to be a catís-paw of the Barisan Nasional leadership in its political vendetta against Anwar, but is mandated by the Malaysian people to be a  fearless sword to strike against corruption, coming from whatever quarter.

If ACA has prima facie evidence to believe that it has good cause to initiate investigations against Anwar, it will have the DAPís full support; but it must act without fear and favour and must be prepared to extend the same treatment to all the high-and-mighty in government, especially those named in Anwarís four police reports.

Zaki has done grave damage to the reputation of ACA officers on their independence, integrity and professionalism by playing to the tune of the Barisan Nasional leadership on the matter of Muradís statutory declaration, which had been denied and challenged by many parties named, such as Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, Aliran, ABIM,  Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad and even by Anwar himself.

DAP openly invites Zaki and his ACA officers to the DAP English forum "Towards A Just Malaysia" at the Federal Hotel, Kuala Lumpur tomorrow,  Monday, 1 November 1999, from 7.30 p.m. to 11 p.m. to convince Malaysians that the ACA is not applying double-standards and is not a catsí-paw of any quarter in anti-corruption investigations in high political places.

*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong