Yang Berhormat Senator Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan
The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department
in charge of Governance, Integrity and Human Rights.
Civil Society demands transparency and accountability on 1MDB
We, members of Civil Society (represented by the Organizations listed below) are greatly concerned by the recent developments pertaining to the 1 Malaysian Development Berhad (1MDB). The recent application to seize assets by the United States Department of Justice (US DoJ) and the seizure of assets by authorities in Switzerland and Singapore have brought to the fore the magnitude and international scale of the fraud perpetrated upon the people of Malaysia through 1MDB. Malaysia’s international standing, reputation and our economy have been badly affected. Investor confidence in Malaysia will wane.
Malaysia’s profile abroad is now one where the acts of greedy officials in Malaysia have caused in the U.S., the “largest single action ever brought by the Kleptocracy Asset Institution”.
Malaysians were deeply shocked by the US DoJ action where top officials of the country have been code-named. This has never been seen before in our country. Yet the response by the government has been muted. Ministers who spoke merely defended 1 MDB and the person described as Malaysian Official 1. The silence about the massive looting of the rakyat’s funds is deafening.
This unsatisfactory state of affairs must cease. It is now of paramount importance for the matter to be addressed immediately in a fair, transparent and accountable manner as the prolonged 1MDB saga has led to political and economic instability in Malaysia and has jeopardized the welfare of the Malaysian people.
The US DoJ action also reflects poorly on our regulatory and justice system which has to date failed to conclude its investigations satisfactorily and is fraught with secrecy.
The US DoJ action also raises several questions as to the investigations conducted by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Agency (MACC) which could not be completed due to a lack of co-operation by the Attorney General. Added to this is the unusual decision by the Attorney General to ‘clear’ the Prime Minister of all wrongdoings in 1MDB despite incomplete investigations.
The case brought by the US DoJ shows that there has been a massive misappropriation of funds from the rakyat. The repeated mention of ‘Malaysian Official 1’ and the close proximity between him and those who misappropriated the funds suggests that the decision by the Attorney General to close the investigations is highly questionable (if not totally flawed).
The earlier removal of the former Attorney General, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail at the height of the investigations, the transfer of the MACC officials, the classifying under the OSA of the Auditor General’s Report the scuttling of the Parliamentary Accounts Committee (PAC) and the subsequent disbanding of the task force investigating 1MDB smacks of interference by the Prime Minster. In connection with this, the recent appointment as the MACC Chief Commissioner of a member of the Attorney General’s team who cleared the Prime Minister, is cause for grave concern for the independence of this institution.
What can possibly be left of the rule of law in our country when nearly all our key institutions have been so blatantly dismantled? Members of Parliament and in particular Cabinet Ministers must search their conscience and answer the question honestly as to whether they are acting in the best interests of the nation in allowing this situation to persist. We wish to remind them that their Oath of Office obliges them to faithfully discharge the duties of that office to the best of their ability, to bear true faith and allegiance to Malaysia, and to preserve, protect and defend its Constitution.
Recognizing the dire situation faced by Malaysia, and the solemn duty of civil society to voice the concerns of the Malaysian people, we do hereby demand that the Members of the Cabinet in particular, and Members of Parliament in general undertake to do the following :-
- Take the necessary steps for the investigation and removal by legal means of the person named as Malaysian Official 1 in the US DoJ suit.
- Establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into 1MDB (and other financial scandals).
- Disclose to the public the outcome of the MACC investigations into the SRC International financial scandal and the result of their interim investigations of the 1MDB scandal.
- Immediately declassify the Auditor General’s Report and convene an emergency Parliamentary sitting to discuss the PAC report and the DoJ proceedings.
- Take immediate steps to allow full and unimpeded investigations to take place, to take steps to arrest the damage done by the scandals to our financial system and the welfare of the people.
- Immediately set up an All-Party Parliamentary Committee (APPC) to comprehensively address the economic and political fallout of the 1MDB scandal and to take immediate remedial measures to address the same.
Endorsed by :-
- Academy of Tamil Studies, Malaysia
- Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4)
- Child Development Initiative Malaysia
- Coalition for Free & Fair Elections (BERSIH)
- Community Action Network (CAN)
- Council of Temples Malaysia
- Gabungan #TangkapMO1
- Group of Concerned Citizens Malaysia
- Himpunan Hijau
- Indian Malaysian Active Generation (IMAGE) Malaysia
- Jawatankuasa Bertindak Kuala Lumpur Tak Nak Insinerator
- Knowledge and Rights with Young people through Safer Spaces (KRYSS)
- Komuniti Muslim Universal (KMU Malaysia)
- Lawyers for Liberty
- Malaysia Tamil Artiste Association
- Malaysia Youth & Student Democratic Movement (DEMA)
- Malaysian Association of Indian University Graduates
- Malaysian Indian Historical Association
- Malaysian Physicians for Social Responsibility
- National Human Rights Society (HAKAM)
- North South Initiative (NSI)
- Oriental Hearts and Mind Study Institute (OHMSI)
- Pusat KOMAS
- Rise of Sarawak Efforts (ROSE)
- Selangor Action Team
- Semparuthi Iyakkam Malaysia
- Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
- Tamil Youth Bell Club
- Warga Aman
- World Tamil Federation – Malaysian chapter