ACA owes Malaysians a satisfactory and convincing accounting as to why it has closed its investigations concluding “no offence disclosed” on Ling Liong Sik and Ling Hee Leong more than six months ago last year when Parliament was told in March that ACA investigations are still ongoing and the ACA investigations on Soh Chee Wen on the same matter not yet completed
Media Conference Statement
- after meeting Anti-Corruption Agency officials on corruption and the outcome of Ling Liong Siki/Hee Leong investigations
by Lim Kit Siang
(Putrajaya, Wednesday): Together with the four DAP MPs for the Federal Territory, Dr. Tan Seng Giaw (Kepong), Fong Kui Lun (Bukit Bintang), Tan Kok Wai (Cheras), Teresa Kok (Seputeh) and the DAP National Publicity Secretary, Ronnie Liu, I met the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) Deputy Director of Investigations, Ahmad Mandus and the head of the ACA general investigations section, R. Rathakirushnan at the ACA in Putrajaya this morning.
Today’s meeting is the upshot of my immediate request to the ACA on 11th July testing the ACA’s new transparency in asking for the outcome of my two reports, one six years ago in June 1997 and the other in June 2002, in connection with ACA investigations as to how Ling Hee Leong, son of the then MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik, could at the age of 27 embark on corporate acquisitions exceeding RM1.2 billion in a matter of months and whether there had been improper use and influence of his father’s political and Ministerial position.
I made the request after the public pledge of a three-prong approach by the ACA on new transparency to be more responsive towards public demand for information about its investigations, viz:
At the start of the meeting, I expressed DAP’s support for the new ACA attitude to be more transparent and accountable by giving progress reports about the outcome of its investigations, and referred to the recent case of the Deputy Chief Minister, Datuk Hilmi Yahaya and hoped that this would not be a selective process by the ACA but would be applied fairly and equitably to all cases.
When we were informed by Ahmad Mandus that the meeting was specific between them and me on the outcome of ACA investigations on Liong Sik and Hee Leong following my two police reports, the DAP MPs and leaders then had a general discussion with the two ACA officers on our concerns, queries and complaints about the problem of corruption in the country.
I referred to outstanding ACA cases, in particular the Perwaja scandal; the statutory declaration by former Bank Negara deputy governor Abdul Murad before the 1999 general election alleging that former Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had amassed a fortune of RM3 billion while in government through 20 "Master Accounts" and the 10,000-acre logging scandal involving Pahang UMNO and Seruan Gemilang Makmur (SGM) which was recently the subject of a series of exclusive reports by Malaysiakini.
When both the ACA officers were not forthcoming as to whether the ACA had carried out investigations into the award of a multi-million ringgit logging concession to UMNO Pahang five years ago under the then Pahang Mentri Besar, Tan Sri Khalil Yaakob, as reported by the Malaysiakini series, I informed the ACA officers that the DAP National Publicity Secretary Ronnie Liu would lodge an official ACA report after our meeting so that ACA would have no excuses not to investigate the Malaysiakini reports.
At the meeting, we stressed the need for the ACA to have a mission statement and objective in the battle against corruption so as to create a culture of zero tolerance against corruption as well as to set the target of ranking Malaysia among the world’s ten least corrupt nations in the annual Transparency International Corruption Perception Index, instead of presently stuck in the rut of being ranked between No. 36 to No. 39 nations in the international placings.
I pointed out that the latest scandal of the bogus Federal Special Forces of Malaysia (FSFM), involving some 8,000 people where military ranks ranging from second lieutenant to captain and even higher could be bought from RM8,000 to RM25,000 or even greater sums should be serious food for thought for the ACA – as it demonstrates a deplorable culture of rampant corruption, where the Malaysian public have come to believe that money can buy anything in the country, whether military rank, titles or academic degrees. This is a terrible indictment of the failure of the ACA to create a culture of integrity in public office and the sanctity of public institutions with zero tolerance for corruption.
Later, at the private meeting between the two ACA officers and myself, I was informed that the ACA had closed investigations on my June 1997 report on Liong Sik and Hee Leong as it has concluded that no offence had been disclosed.
As for the second report arising from Soh Chee Wen’s interview with Malaysiakini in May 2002 whether Liong Sik had committed an offence of obstructing ACA investigations, I was told investigations are being completed. Further to my query, I was told that the ACA completed its investigations into my June 1997 report more than six months ago some time last year.
ACA owes Malaysians a satisfactory and convincing accounting as to why it has closed its investigations concluding “no offence disclosed” on my first report on Ling Liong Sik and Ling Hee Leong more than six months ago last year for two reasons:
For these two reasons, the ACA should give satisfactory and convincing reasons for its handling of its investigations relating to Liong Sik and Hee Leong.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman