What’s so great about Penang, asks MACC chief

Dzulkifli-AhmadKUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) today questioned the need to roll out the red carpet to Penang for it to sign the agency’s anti-corruption pledge.

Its chief commissioner Dzulkifli Ahmad said unlike Penang, other states had signed the pledge voluntarily.

“So I don’t know why Lim Guan Eng says we need to invite them. What makes Penang so great? I’m really baffled, but it’s up to him to do what he wants,” he said, referring to the Penang chief minister.

Dzulkifli was speaking to reporters after attending the anti-corruption pledge signing ceremony with the police here. Also present was Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar.

Dzulkifli was responding to Lim’s political secretary Wong Hon Wai’s statement last week that the state had not received any letter from MACC to sign the pledge.


Wong, who is also the Air Itam assemblyman, said this after expressing the state government’s “surprise” that the anti-graft body had attacked the DAP-led state government for its reluctance to sign the pledge.

“The attack by MACC against Penang seems political because MACC never wrote to the Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng about the Corruption-Free Pledge,” Wong was quoted as saying by Malay Mail Online.

He also said the state government could not make any decision on the pledge as it had not received any official letter from MACC.

Dzulkefli said Penang had not signed the pledge, adding that those who had were serious about combatting corruption.

On July 15, Dzulkefli had said MACC could not “force” Penang to sign the pledge.

“We’ll just have to wait and see. But looking at the scenario, a lot of corruption-related reports had been lodged in Penang,” he said.

Two days later, Penang’s Deputy Chief Minister II P Ramasamy said the state had no faith in MACC, claiming that the agency had done little to address the menace of corruption.

He said MACC was not free from political interference and would continue to be so for a long time to come.

“Given this, why should Penang or Selangor or Kelantan take the corruption-free pledge seriously?” he said.