NEAC MUST ALSO REVIEW PM’S CONTROVERSIAL PET PROJECTS

Press statement by Kua Kia Soong, SUARAM Adviser 9 Feb 2019

It is timely that the Prime Minister has decided to set up National Economic Action Council (NEAC) 2.0 in anticipation of the looming local and global recession. While few would argue that strategic preparations for this impending recession are needed one important question arises:

Do the terms of reference of NEAC 2.0 include a review of the controversial pet projects already announced by the PM, namely the Third National Car, the privatisation of Khazanah and other GLCs or are these decisions going to be accepted by the Council as a fait accompli?

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THE PRIME MINISTER’S BIZARRE APPOINTMENTS

Press statement by Kua Kia Soong, SUARAM Adviser 30 Aug 2018

Since his assumption to the PMO, Dr Mahathir’s appointments to various posts have been bizarre to say the least. The “virgin Ministers”- as the new Cabinet has been dubbed – have been so thankful to the PM for their respective appointments to the Cabinet that they have been at pains not to question the PM’s “wisdom”. The PM’s wise choices have included the appointment of a fresh graduate from his own party with hardly any work experience as the Youth and Sports Minister. Other appointments have been curiouser and curiouser and smell of political mischief rather than finding the best person for the job.

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Memorandum ke PMO atas isu 1MDB

Memorandum kepada:

Yang Berhormat Senator Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan
Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri
yang bertanggungjawab ke atas tadbir urus, integriti dan hak asasi manusia

4 Ogos 2016

Masyarakat Sivil menuntut ketelusan dan akauntabiliti mengenai 1MDB 

Kami, ahli Masyarakat Sivil seperti yang ditandatangani di bawah, amat bimbang terhadap pembangunan baru-baru ini mengenai isu 1 Malaysian Development Berhad (1MDB). Kebelakangan ini, permohonan untuk menyita aset oleh Jabatan Kehakiman Amerika Syarikat (DOJ) dan rampasan aset oleh pihak berkuasa di Switzerland dan Singapore telah mendedahkan magnitud dan skala penipuan yang dilakukan pada peringkat antarabangsa terhadap rakyat Malaysia melalui 1MDB. Kedudukan Malaysia secara antarabangsa, reputasi dan ekonomi telah dijejaskan dengan teruk. Keyakinan pelabur-pelabur di Malaysia akan semakin mundur disebabkan isu ini.

Kini, profil Malaysia di luar negara merupakan profil yang telah menyebabkan satu-satunya tindakan yang paling besar yang pernah dibawa oleh Kleptocracy Asset Institution di Amerika Syarikat akibat tindakan tamak pegawai-pegawai di Malaysia.

Rakyat Malaysia amat terkejut dengan tindakan DoJ yang telah menyatakan pegawai tertinggi Malaysia dengan penggunaan kod-bernama. Tindakan seperti ini tidak sesekali pun pernah disaksikan di dalam negara kita. Namun, kerajaan kita hanya berbisu mengenai hal ini. Menteri-menteri yang telah bercakap mengenai hal ini cuma berniat untuk mempertahankan 1MDB dan individu yang disabitkan yang hanya dikenali sebagai Malaysian Official 1. Tiada sebarang perbincangan mengenai rompakan besar-besaran terhadap dana rakyat yang merupakan sesuatu yang amat merisaukan.

Keadaan urusan yang tidak memuaskan ini mesti dihentikan. Kini, isu ini merupakan sesuatu yang amat penting yang harus ditangani segera secara adil, telus dan bertanggungjawab. Ini kerana saga 1MDB yang berpanjangan telah membawa kepada ketidakstabilan politik dan ekonomi di Malaysia dan telah menjejaskan kebajikan rakyat Malaysia.

Tindakan US DoJ telah menunjukkan keburukan sistem kawal selia dan keadilan kita yang telah gagal menyelesaikan siasatan dengan memuaskan dan adalah penuh dengan kerahsiaan.

Tindakan US DoJ juga telah menimbulkan beberapa persoalan mengenai siasatan yang dikendalikan oleh Badan Pencegah Rasuah (MACC) yang tidak berjaya dilaksanakan disebabkan kekurangan kerjasama oleh Peguam Negara. Tambahan pula, Peguam Negara telah melakukan keputusan luar biasa dengan percubaannya untuk membersihkan salah laku Perdana Menteri dalam isu 1MDB sungguhpun penyiasatan masih belum lengkap.

Kes US DoJ ini menunjukkan bahawa terdapat penyelewengan dana secara besar-besaran daripada rakyat. Terma ‘Malaysian Official 1’ secara berulang-kali dan hubungan rapat di antara individu tersebut dan individu-individu lain yang telah menyalahgunakan dana mencadangkan bahawa keputusan Peguam Negara untuk menutup siasatan amat menyangsikan (jika bukan sama sekali cacat).

Penyingkiran bekas Peguam Negara Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail ketika siasatan utama, pemindahan pegawai-pegawai MACC, klasifikasi Laporan Ketua Audit Negara di bawah OSA, Jawatankuasa Akaun Parlimen (PAC) yang didirikan secara tergesa-gesa dan pembubaran pasukan petugas yang menyiasat isu 1MDB merupakan petunjuk campurtangan  yang dilakukan oleh Perdana Menteri kita. Berkaitan ini, pelantikan terbaru  ketua Pesuruhjaya MACC yang terdiri dari pasukan Peguam Negara yang telah membersihkan nama Perdana Menteri. Hal ini merupakan sesuatu kebimbangan terhadap kebebasan institusi ini.

Apakah yang masih tertinggal sebagai kedaulatan negara kita, apabila hampir semua institusi utama telah dirobohkan secara terang-terangan? Ahli Parlimen dan terutamanya Menteri Kabinet mesti mencari suara hati mereka dan menjawab persoalan sama ada mereka bertindak demi kepentingan negara dengan membenarkan keadaan ini untuk berterusan. Kami ingin mengingatkan mereka bahawa sumpah jawatan mewajibkan mereka untuk setia melaksanakan tugas-tugas pada keupayaan terbaik mereka, untuk memegang kesetiaan dan kepercayaan kepada Malaysia dan untuk memelihara, melindungi dan mempertahankan Perlembagaan Persekutuannya.

Dengan mengenalpasti keadaan buruk yang dihadapi oleh Malaysia dan tanggungjawab Masyarakat Sivil untuk menyuarakan kebimbangan rakyat , kami dengan ini menuntut semua Ahli Parlimen, terutamanya Menteri Kabinet melaksanakan perkara-perkara berikut:-

  1. Mengambil tindakan yang sewajarnya bagi siasatan dan penyingkiran
  2. individu yang dinamakan sebagai Malaysian Official 1 di dalam kes US DoJ
  3. dengan cara undang-undang.
  4. Menubuhkan sebuah Suruhanjaya Siasatan Diraja untuk penyiasatan 1MDB
  5. (dan isu skandal kewangan yang lain).
  6. Mendedahkan keputusan penyiasatan MACC mengenai isu skandal kewangan SRC dan keputusan interim tentang siasatan skandal 1MDB kepada orang awam.
  7. Mengubah secara serta merta status Laporan Ketua Audit Negara dan mengadakan
  8. sidang kecemasan untuk membincangkan laporan PAC dan prosiding DoJ tersebut.
  9. Mengambil langkah segera bagi membolehkan siasatan penuh dan tanpa halangan, untuk mengambil langkah-langkah untuk menghentikan kerosakan berterusan akibat skandal-skandal terhadap sistem kewangan dan kebajikan rakyat.
  10. Dengan segera menubuhkan satu jawatankuasa melibatkan semua pihak (All Party Parliamentary Committee (APPC) bagi menangani kemerosotan ekonomi dan politik akibat skandal 1MDB dan untuk mengambil langkah-langkah pemulihan segera untuk menangani isu ini.

Disokong :-

  1. Academy of Tamil Studies, Malaysia
  2. Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4)
  3. Challenger
  4. Child Development Initiative Malaysia
  5. Coalition for Free & Fair Elections (BERSIH)
  6. Community Action Network (CAN)
  7. Council of Temples Malaysia
  8. EMPOWER
  9. ENGAGE
  10. Gabungan #TangkapMO1
  11. Group of Concerned Citizens Malaysia
  12. Himpunan Hijau
  13. Indian Malaysian Active Generation (IMAGE) Malaysia
  14. Jawatankuasa Bertindak Kuala Lumpur Tak Nak Insinerator
  15. Knowledge and Rights with Young people through Safer Spaces (KRYSS)
  16. Komuniti Muslim Universal (KMU Malaysia)
  17. Lawyers for Liberty
  18. Malaysia Tamil Artiste Association
  19. Malaysia Youth & Student Democratic Movement (DEMA)
  20. Malaysian Association of Indian University Graduates
  21. Malaysian Indian Historical Association
  22. Malaysian Physicians for Social Responsibility
  23. MIDAS
  24. National Human Rights Society (HAKAM)
  25. North South Initiative (NSI)
  26. Oriental Hearts and Mind Study Institute (OHMSI)
  27. Pusat KOMAS
  28. Rise of Sarawak Efforts (ROSE)
  29. Selangor Action Team
  30. Semparuthi Iyakkam Malaysia
  31. Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
  32. Tamil Youth Bell Club
  33. Warga Aman
  34. World Tamil Federation – Malaysian chapter

Memorandum to PMO on 1MDB

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 :-

  1. 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.
  2. Establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into 1MDB (and other financial scandals).
  3. 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.
  4. Immediately declassify the Auditor General’s Report and convene an emergency Parliamentary sitting to discuss the PAC report and the DoJ proceedings.
  5. 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.
  6. 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 :-

  1. Academy of Tamil Studies, Malaysia
  2. Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4)
  3. Challenger
  4. Child Development Initiative Malaysia
  5. Coalition for Free & Fair Elections (BERSIH)
  6. Community Action Network (CAN)
  7. Council of Temples Malaysia
  8. EMPOWER
  9. ENGAGE
  10. Gabungan #TangkapMO1
  11. Group of Concerned Citizens Malaysia
  12. Himpunan Hijau
  13. Indian Malaysian Active Generation (IMAGE) Malaysia
  14. Jawatankuasa Bertindak Kuala Lumpur Tak Nak Insinerator
  15. Knowledge and Rights with Young people through Safer Spaces (KRYSS)
  16. Komuniti Muslim Universal (KMU Malaysia)
  17. Lawyers for Liberty
  18. Malaysia Tamil Artiste Association
  19. Malaysia Youth & Student Democratic Movement (DEMA)
  20. Malaysian Association of Indian University Graduates
  21. Malaysian Indian Historical Association
  22. Malaysian Physicians for Social Responsibility
  23. MIDAS
  24. National Human Rights Society (HAKAM)
  25. North South Initiative (NSI)
  26. Oriental Hearts and Mind Study Institute (OHMSI)
  27. Pusat KOMAS
  28. Rise of Sarawak Efforts (ROSE)
  29. Selangor Action Team
  30. Semparuthi Iyakkam Malaysia
  31. Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
  32. Tamil Youth Bell Club
  33. Warga Aman
  34. World Tamil Federation – Malaysian chapter

From Shadow to Light

For Immediate Release
10th November 2015

From Shadow to Light

Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) would like to wish all Malaysians a happy Deepavali and hope that this festival of lights would bring light and joy to everyone.

On this day, SUARAM would like to shed light on information that was shrouded in ambiguity and not made publicly known.

After 15 years of struggle, the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) have obtained some degrees of recognition by Malaysians. While their success was not without flaws, the impact they have in the human rights discourse in Malaysia cannot be dismissed easily. Despite their success (or perhaps because of their success), the Government of Malaysia have decided to curtail and reduce the budget for SUHAKAM for 2016. The budget allocation for SUHAKAM for 2016 is a mere RM5,509,400 (in comparison, RM10,986,200 for 2015). It would be difficult for SUHAKAM to conduct its daily operation and public campaigns with almost a 50% cut in budget.

With Malaysia’s deteriorating human rights situation observed throughout 2015, this cut in budget clearly shows the Government of Malaysia’s lack of political will to empower SUHAKAM. The Government of Malaysia cannot in good conscience claim that they hold human rights and civil liberties in high regards when it is not reflected in the budget allocation for SUHAKAM.

On this note, SUARAM calls for the Government of Malaysia to review the budget allocation for SUHAKAM and provide more intervention power for SUHAKAM to conduct its daily operations and public campaigns in a manner that reflect its status as a National Human Rights Institution. Failure to do so would ensure that the Government of Malaysia’s fail in complying with the Paris Principles and eventually result in the downgrade of SUHAKAM from its current ‘A’ status. This downgrade would only add to the ever growing list of human rights violations by the Malaysian Government and further shame Malaysia in its commitment to uphold and human rights and democracy.

In Solidarity,

Sevan Doraisamy
Executive Director
SUARAM