Kitingan reminds MACC about Shafie, Risda cases

Jeffrey Kitingan, president of Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku Rakyat Sabah (STAR)

KOTA KINABALU: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has been urged to be fair when investigating corruption cases even if it involves leaders of Pakatan Harapan or their allies.

A Sabah opposition leader, Jeffrey Kitingan, said he applauded the announcement by MACC chief commissioner Latheefa Koya that the commission is reviewing cases that have been closed or marked for “no further action”.

Kitingan said he hoped that among the cases to be reviewed would be a corruption case involving Chief Minister Shafie Apdal, who was hauled in for questioning by the MACC in 2017 a year before he came to office through the 2018 general election.

“To ignore this case just because the people involved are allies to the current federal government would be unfair and the whole exercise would be a farce if it was only meant to pressure those in the opposition,” Kitingan said.

The MACC should also reopen an investigation into a RM155 million sale of land to the Rubber Industry Smallholders Development Authority (Risda).

The case involves lawyer Michael Persius Ubu, who reportedly failed to show up at the MACC office despite being summoned early last year along with Warisan vice- president Peter Anthony, who is now Sabah Infrastructure Development Minister.

Anthony was remanded for three days, but the case was not pursued after MACC failed to track down Ubu.

The MACC are reportedly looking at cases involving leaders in Sarawak. However, MACC insiders also said they are looking at several Sabah former and current state government leaders.

So far only former Sabah chief minister Musa Aman and Sabah Umno chairman Bung Moktar Radin have been formally charged for corruption. Musa’s case will go to trial in June next year.

Kitingan himself was also questioned by the MACC immediately after Warisan came to power in Sabah in 2018, on an allegation made on social media that he was paid RM20 million to side with Barisan Nasional after a hung assembly.

The case was not pursued after a short investigation by the MACC.