Call on government to identify the Minister involved in the bogus Federal Special Forces of Malaysia (FSFM) and a White Paper to focus in particular on the security, political and official involvement and the corruption dimensions of the FSFM scam
by Lim Kit Siang
(Penang, Friday): DAP calls on the government to identify the Cabinet Minister involved in the bogus Federal Special Forces of Malaysia (FSFM) and a White Paper to focus in particular on the security, political and official involvement and the corruption dimensions of the FSFM scam.
Responding to the proposal by the Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, for a White Paper on FSFM, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said yesterday that the government had no sound basis yet to issue a White Paper on FSFM, as the authorities had yet to ascertain whether or not FSFM was a militant group.
Mahathir should reconsider his stand against a White Paper on FSFM as whether the bogus organization was a militant group should not be the only basis to decide whether a White Paper should be issued, as public interest also demand a full government accounting in particular on the security, political and official involvement and the corruption dimensions of the scam.
This is particularly the case when political patronage or involvement in the bogus FSFM is said to reach very high political and official levels, as to implicate a Cabinet Minister.
Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said police investigations revealed that the FSFM operations were only linked to cheating and did not pose a threat to national security.
This is too quick and easy a conclusion for the police to reach, for security should not be equated just with national security but also with the personal security of the citizens from crime and the fear of crime.
Even if a bogus military outfit with 8,000 members, with bogus officers, military uniforms, authority cards, handcuffs and documents have not reached the level of a threat to national security, it cannot be treated lightly as it posed a threat to the personal security of the citizenry.
On Tuesday, the Minister for Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said that his Ministry had not directed its enforcement officers to make house-to-house checks for pirated video compact discs and pornographic materials, as it is only going after distributors and sellers of these materials and not the households. He said the public should lodge a report with the ministry or the police if they encountered problems.
It is another example of the insensitivity of the authorities to citizen security that such a clarification was only made almost two months after the press had carried screaming headlines like “Search for porn to include houses too” quoting a government official that the crackdown on pirated and pornographic VCDs was going a step further with raids on houses, creating opportunities for criminals visiting houses as bogus police or government officers pretending to search for illegal VCDs!
The White Paper on FSFM should therefore address the security, both national security and citizenry security, aspects.
It should also throw light on the extent of political and official involvement in the bogus outfit. The FSFM is a splinter group of 20 who were sacked from the Malaysian Emergency Action Force (PTCM), a registered body with the aim of assisting various agencies during times of crisis or disaster. The PTCM head, Staff Marshal Munsyi Muslim Yacob, said the self-styled FSFM leader “lieutenant-general” Nor Azami Ahmad Ghazali was sacked from PTCM after he expressed his intention to turn the force into a military style organization.
Two questions come to mind: Firstly, why didn’t PTCM inform the authorities about the FSFM, especially after this new name was used following several warnings by Munsyi about using the PTCM name.
Secondly, Munsyi told a media conference in Bangi yesterday that he had proof that high-level officials including a Minister had been involved in the bogus FSFM activities and operations, although he declined to reveal the Minister’s identity. (Sin Chew, Nanyang and China Press)
The White Paper should identify the Minister involved in the bogus FSFM and the degree of political patronage and official support it had received that it could operate for so long and quite openly as to recruit 8,000 people and rake in some RM64 million for selling fake military ranks.
At present, however, the most serious aspect of the bogus FSFM scam must be the corruption aspect, not only as to why 8,000 Malaysians could be so gullible as to fall for the FSFM scam, but to believe that military ranks could be bought with money! It is a reflection of a very sick society where corruption has become so rampant that it has bred a climate and culture where Malaysians have come to believe that public institutions and officials have become so corrupt that everything can be bought with a price whether rank, title or educational degrees.
The White Paper should make recommendations as to how to cure Malaysia of such multiple sickness as highlighted by the FSFM scam.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman