Foreign-funded NGOs: PAS man wants answers

The renegade PAS MP queried the Home Ministry on what is being done to monitor these NGOs, in an apparent posture against Suaram.

Patrick Lee, FMT

Suaram it seems, not only has opponents within Barisan Nasional, but also from Pakatan Rakyat.

This was seen in a recent query by PAS-Bachok MP Nasharudin Mat Isa, who asked the Home Ministry what is being done to monitor NGO activities and their respective funding, especially that of foreign origin.

He also asked how many NGOs are registered in Malaysia.

In a Parliamentary written response, Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said that Malaysia’s 46,249 registered NGOs are monitored through their annual statements.

These contained reports on their activities, finances, annual general meeting minutes and a list of their committee members.

He added that this annual statement needed to be sent to the Registrar of Societies 60 days after an NGO’s AGM is held. If there is no AGM, then the statement would have to be sent 60 days after the end of the calendar year.

Nasharudin’s query is suspect, given the recent government-led investigations on Suaram.

Noted for its role in spearheading the controversial Scorpene scandal, the group, along with others, has been recently accused of receiving foreign funds.

This led various figures in the political realm to denounce the group as a traitor.

Although Nasharudin did not attack Suaram directly, it is believed that by drawing attention to Suaram’s foreign funds, the PAS MP is also going against Pakatan’s views on the matter.

Recently, DAP-Petaling Jaya MP Tony Pua filed a parliamentary motion aimed at cutting Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s pay by RM10.

Pua did this claiming that Ismail was “selectively persecuting” Suaram for Barisan Nasional’s agenda.

The motion was rejected by Dewan Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia yesterday.

Nasharudin’s actions also seem to show a growing opposition for Pakatan, especially that of DAP.

Early this month, the Bachok MP claimed that DAP is trying to turn Malaysia into a Christian state.

Both DAP and PAS leaders have criticised Nasharudin for his allegations.