Only a handful of civil servants corrupt, says chief secretary to govt

PUTRAJAYA: The Chief Secretary to the Government has dismissed claims that corruption in the civil service has worsened to the point it has affected the quality of service.

Ismail Bakar said only a handful of civil servants were corrupt.

“The number of cases has decreased. Since the beginning of the year, only 200 cases were investigated by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission,” he revealed at a meet-the-press session here.

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad had in July lamented that the rot in the civil service was so deep that his administration had trouble finding capable officers to replace corrupt department heads.

In an interview with Investvine, a Hong Kong-based business news portal, Mahathir had also said there were only a few corrupt civil servants during his first stint as prime minister.

On a separate matter, Ismail commented on Council of Eminent Persons head Daim Zainuddin’s claim that there were moles in the civil service who had helped controversial businessman Low Taek Jho, better known as Jho Low, evade the authorities.

Ismail said he was certain intelligence officers had some information.

“If there was none, Tun Daim wouldn’t have made such a claim.”

The former finance minister had a few days ago, in an interview with Channel NewsAsia, said informants within the country’s administration and enforcement agencies had been tipping off the flamboyant businessman who is wanted by Malaysian authorities in its ongoing probe into the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scandal.