Pua: Release report, the cat’s out of the bag

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KUALA LUMPUR: Putrajaya has no choice but to declassify the Auditor-General’s Report on the 1MDB, stressed Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua in a statement. “This is the only way to save its own credibility and reputation.”

He added that there was no point in keeping the Report a secret any more “now that it has been leaked”.

Pua called on Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamad, formerly Chairman of the parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC), to take the initiative to get the Report released.

Otherwise, he warned, Nur Jazlan and the Malaysian Government will be seen as clearly attempting to cover up a mega global financial scandal. “They will be seen as protecting the wrongdoers in the debt-ridden state-owned company.”

Instead of recommending the Report be declassified, he lamented, Nur Jazlan was authorising a witchhunt of Sarawak Report (SR) for leaking the Report through an expose.

Pua, who is also DAP National Publicity Secretary, was expressing extreme disappointment that the Deputy Home Minister had called on the police to investigate SR for breach of the Official Secrets Act (OSA).

“Of all people, Nur Jazlan should understand the concept of accountability and transparency. He preached this during his tenure as PAC Chairman.”

In fact, he recalled, Nur Jazlan often led the PAC to demand answers from 1MDB, gave clear instructions to the Auditor-General on the information to be acquired and even concluded that the mysterious key-man, Low Taek Jho, be summoned to testify before the Committee.

His stand on the matter was clear and can be read in the published Hansard as well as press conferences, continued Pua.

He wondered what caused the 180-degree about-turn in Nur Jazlan’s position on the 1MDB scandal.

“His directive to the police on SR could destroy the goodwill and reputation he has gained over the past few years.” Nur Jazlan was seen as one of the few Umno politicians with some traces of integrity, reminded Pua. “The people hoped that he would carry on crusading for better accountability in the administration of government subsidiaries.”

In the 1MDB case, said Pua, the people wanted in the very least that he try to convince Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak that the right thing to do under the circumstances was to “declassify” the Report.

Pua virtually hailed the SR expose when he referred to it as a feat. “Even I could not achieve this because PAC Chairman Hasan Arifin ruled that PAC members could not retain a copy of the document.”

“This is despite the fact that we had been specifically cleared to access the Report.”

Pua hastened to assure that he could only read the Report during the PAC meetings or upon request at the Parliamentary office.

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