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‘Fight against graft needs statesmen, not politicians’

 | February 28, 2017

Politicians are concerned about the next election while statesmen are concerned about the next generation, says transparency advocate.


KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian politicians are too busy fighting with one another to focus on what really matters – the wellbeing of Malaysians, says Transparency International-Malaysia.

Its president, Akhbar Satar, said this was one of the factors contributing to the high level of corruption in Malaysia.

“Politicians are concerned about the next election while statesmen are concerned about the next generation.

“Right now, we are suffering from a drought of statesmen and a flood of politicians. But corruption can only be fixed by statesmen, not politicians.”

Akhbar was speaking at the launch of the Transparency International-Malaysia Global Corruption Barometer (Asia Pacific) 2017 here today.

His statement came following the results of the survey in which 1,009 Malaysians were polled between last November and January.

In the survey, 14% of the respondents said the act of voting for clean political leaders is the second most effective way to eradicate corruption; 22% feel there is nothing ordinary people can do to fight corruption; and 17% believe corruption can be eradicated by refusal to pay bribes.

“The public is not stupid. Politicians must be clean and must be seen as clean.

“Priority must be given to the people. But the politicians now are too busy fighting and they have no time for the people.

“On top of that, some of these politicians are also involved in corruption themselves.”

Akhbar stressed that this was why he, too, believed in the importance of voting for the right candidates to lead the country.

Other methods that the respondents believe are effective against corruption are by reporting corruption to the authorities (12%); by talking to friends or relatives about the problem (7%); and by simply talking about it (7%).

Respondents also support the act of signing petitions calling for a stronger fight against corruption (6%); participation in demonstrations (3%); and boycotting businesses that have been found guilty of corrupt practices (2%).


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