Free-for-all for the corrupt in M’sia

Badawi and Muhyiddin are saying anyone who wants to be corrupt just has to siphon out everything using the family or friend’s names and they are not involved and cannot be blamed or prosecuted.

By Jackson Ng, Retired journalist

INVESTORS and the world, be forewarned. A new and deadly strain of “mad cow” disease has mutated in Malaysia. The outbreak of the “virus” (aka as corrupton) is cancerous and will demolish nations.

Yes. That is what is happening to Malaysia now over the RM250 million National Feedlot Centre (NFC) financial debacle.

The Barisan Nasional (BN) government – led by both the prime minister and his deputy – has endorsed and legalised corruption by defending corrupt practices and the blatant abuse of public funds.

The alleged siphoning-out of RM83 million from the NFC coffers into firms controlled by the family of Wanita Umno chief and minister Shahrizat Jalil is so corruptly clear but because she is the ruling elite, action against her is being avoided.

The funds were allocated to NFC for a project to produce affordable beef to Malaysians.

Instead, the NFC funds were siphoned off to pay for a super-plush RM10 million condo in Bangsar and an RM800,000 overseas trip for the Umno Senator’s family.

Is it that difficult for the government and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to differentiate cows, trips and condominiums?

A host of Umno men leaders have since rushed to defend Shahrizat including Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his deputy Muhyiddin Yassin, Agriculture Minister Noh Omar and Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamalauddin.

Khairy even went so far as to justify the purchase of the condo as a short-term investment so as to enable NFC to reap higher yields.

Not only is his attempt to justify the multi-million-ringgit condo buy insensible, it is outrageously irresponsible and nothing short of abuse of public funds.

Public funds are allocated for specific projects. In NFC’s case, the money is for breeding cows for beef to boost supply for Malaysians. To use the money for any other purpose is clearly unacceptable and untrustworthy by those given specific projects.

If Khairy’s justification for buying a condo is accepted by the BN government, then Malaysia’s corrupt practices have taken a new low.

It signals a free-for-all for the corrupt as any minister, politician or Malaysian, with access to public funds, can use the nation’s wealth for anything they wish. Sharizat’s family would have set the precedent and the MACC will not be able to act on any corrupt practice, irrespective of the political divide.

Malaysians. Don’t take my or anyone’s word for it. Judge for yourself, with conscience, the following bullshit:

* Khairy’s father in law and ex-premier Abdullah Badawi – and Muhyiddin Yassin have publicly insisted there was no reason for Shahrizat to step down; and

* “Ask the individual concerned. What’s it got to do with Shahrizat? It’s her husband … Shahrizat’s not involved, so don’t ask her. If Shahrizat were the CEO then sure [you can ask her] but right now she’s not involved and it is very unfair to label her as involved,” Badawi had told reporters. Both Badawi and Muhyiddin seem to be trying to separate Shahrizat from the business dealings of her husband and children, reasoning that the scandal was not Shahrizat’s doing since the one directly involved are her husband and children.

* Badawi and Muhyiddin are saying anyone who wants to be corrupt just has to siphon out everything using the family or friend’s names and they are not involved and cannot be blamed or prosecuted; and

* Is corruption through proxies okay? and

* Is it above board for Shahrizat, being a minister, and her family members to secure a multi-million-ringgit government contract?

Malaysia, under the BN rule, is on course to economic destruction, faster than initially anticipated.

No sane investor will want to invest in a country with a government that does not respect the law, or has separate laws – one for the ruling elite and another for those out of the corridors of power.

That is why the likes of Robert Quok gave up on Malaysia and took his money to China. Today, he is investing US$10 billion into oil palm and palm oil activities in Indonesia.