I have just been informed that the whistleblower who wrote to me about the allegations involving the business interests of Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief Azam Baki, is being sued.
Azam’s lawyers are demanding that the whistleblower apologise for a report she has written on this matter, issue a public apology and pay damages amounting to RM10m. The whistleblower received the letter of demand today.
I am shocked, even appalled, that this whistleblower, who raised legitimate questions of national interest, is now being sued by Azam. What Azam should be doing is publicly disclosing all his business interests to protect the image and integrity of the MACC.
By sending this letter of demand to the whistleblower, what is now occurring is nothing more than serious intimidation by Azam. If whistleblowers are threatened in this way by those in a position of power – long a trend we have seen in Malaysia – how can we make any progress to get citizens to expose corruption and protect them for doing so?
I call on Azam to withdraw this letter of demand immediately and cease his attempt to victimise the whistleblower.
I also call on the prime minister and the opposition leader to jointly act to begin an immediate review of the functioning of the MACC. The prime minister must also act immediately to create an independent panel to review the allegations of Azam’s business interests.
Dr Edmund Terence Gomez, a political economist, recently resigned from the MACC’s consultative and corruption prevention panel