Start process to regulate political financing, NGO tells Putrajaya

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KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 10): The Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) has urged the government to take seriously the recommendations on political financing made by Transparency International Malaysia and ensure that political financing should already be regulated before the 14th General Election.

In a statement Dec 9, IDEAS chief executive Wan Saiful Wan Jan said while the institute welcomed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s acknowledgement for the need to regulate political financing in the country, the government should start the process soon before the idea was shelved again.

Wan Saiful said Najib’s plan to impose a heavier sanction on graft should also be lauded.

“However, we think priority should be given to provide the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) a mandate that will enable them to investigate those who live beyond their means and to have a greater authority in investigating corrupt practices beyond gratification.

“Equally important is to give more independence to the MACC to be able to hire and fire its own personnel, instead of relying on the Public Service Commission under the executive arm of government,” he said.

Wan Saiful said IDEAS was working with a number of NGOs to push for the amendment of the MACC Act and the Federal Constitution to provide the MACC with these mandates.

“We will continue to work on these initiatives and urge the relevant authorities to share the draft of the actual amendments to the relevant laws with the public once they are available,”he said.