Sunday, February 22, 2009

Karpal questions MACC’s ‘unholy haste’ against Khalid

By Priscilla Dielenberg, The Star

DAP chairman Karpal Singh is questioning the “unholy haste” behind the decision of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in announcing that it had good and strong evidence against Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim for misusing his powers.

“As MP (Bukit Gelugor), I demand from MACC chief commissioner Datuk Seri Ahmad Said Hamdan as to the basis on which he made this very serious statement publicly.

“I wonder what his motive was in publicly maligning the Mentri Besar,” said Karpal Singh on Saturday.

He said it was a very serious matter for Ahmad Said to publicly announce, before a decision was made to prosecute, that the MACC had good and strong evidence to show that Khalid misused his powers over the maintenance of his personal car and the distribution of 46 cows for slaughter in his Bandar Tun Razak parliamentary constituency.

Karpal Singh said he would raise the matter in Parliament, which is in the process of sitting, if he did not get a proper reply.

He said Ahmad Said was “quite incompetent” in saying the commission would refer the case to the Attorney-General’s chambers although it was vested with powers to prosecute.

“He does not even know the provisions of Section 58 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009, which states that a prosecution for an offence under the Act shall not be instituted except by or with the consent of the Public Prosecutor.

“The MACC is given wide powers of investigation but no power to prosecute,” he said.

Karpal Singh also said Selangor opposition leader Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo should not publicly say that in the event Khalid was charged, he should resign until such time the case was concluded.

“The question of resigning his post does not arise because the law is very clear. A person is presumed innocent until proven guilty, that’s elementary,” said Karpal Singh.

He was speaking at a press conference at his legal firm in Green Hall here after having his statement recorded by investigating officer ASP Mohamad Ismail Jamaluddin from the George Town police headquarters in connection to his police report lodged on Friday about receiving live bullets and a death threat through the mail.

Karpal Singh said the case had been classified as criminal intimidation by an anonymous communication under Section 507 of the Penal Code, which carries a jail term of up to two years in addition to the punishment provided for threatening to cause death or grievous hurt under Section 506, which carries a jail term of up to seven years, or a fine, or both.

“I call upon the Inspector-General of Police to personally look into the report, which is a very serious threat to an MP. No MP should be intimidated with death,” he said.

He also reminded whoever had sent the threat that it would not deter him in his duties to the people and in the public interest.

No comments: