MACC Operations Review Panel wants to study Lingam’s case

(Bernama) – THE Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC)’s Operations Review Panel wants approval from the Attorney-General (AG) to study the Datuk V.K. Lingam video clip case.

Panel chairman, Tan Sri Dr. Hadenan Abdul Jalil, said he would write to the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail, that the case be refered to the panel.

“I will write to the A-G and ask that the case be refered to the panel. We also want to know what happened in the case.

“The panel will decide if the MACC needed to proceed with the case,” he told reporters here today.

On Monday, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, said no action would be taken against Lingam as he had not breached any specific law in lobbying the appointment of judges as shown in the video clip.

He said the government had looked into the matter from various aspects, including under the Sedition Act 1948, but found that there was no specific law under which he could be convicted for abuse of power on the issue of appointment of judges in the country.

Dr Hadenan said the panel played a role as a body to give an alternative opinion to the MACC and among its main roles was to determine that investigation is done transparently and to ensure that no case is closed at will.

“More that 96 cases were tabled to us from January till September for closing of case. We agreed that a portion of the cases could be closed but also felt that there were situations where we wanted some case re-opened and in the end the suspects were charged,” he said.

He said the MACC needed to follow any proposal by the panel relating to a case including re-opening investigation.

However, Dr Hadenan said the panel, made up of seven persons, was not involved in the investigation process as it was not a part of the commission but represented the public.

He said the MACC’s legal and prosecution division was handling 780 trial cases and 498 appeal cases and the commission only had about 30 deputy public prosecutors (DPPs) throughout the country.

He said the small number of DPPs compared to the large number of cases was a burden that could affect prosecutorial performance.