Reveal funding by US-based NED, Suaram tells Pakatan Harapan
Suaram has called on Pakatan Harapan (PH) to explain its dependence on funding from US-based National Endowment for Democracy (NED), which has allegedly been funding the opposition for over a decade.
The rights NGO’s adviser, Kua Kia Soong said this was revealed by Daniel Twining, the president of the International Republican Institute (IRI), three years ago.
The IRI, Twining said, had been working with opposition parties in Malaysia since 2002 with the help of the NED.
“So, for 15 years, working through NED resources, we worked to strengthen Malaysian opposition parties,” Twining was heard saying in a video, shared by Kua.
He also said that one of the first things the new PH government did after coming to power in 2018 was to freeze Chinese infrastructure investments “because it had opened the books and discovered there was a lot of funny money swishing around”.
Twining went on to say there was deep dive on foreign influence in Malaysia and it would “redound on the US’ benefit”.
“It is up to Pakatan Harapan to explain their dependence on NED funding if they can,” Kua said in a statement.
“They have their own vested interests.”
He also wants NGOs here to sever any links to NED “if they care about their credibility”.
He said Suaram did so after NED was exposed as a “CIA soft power front” for the US government several years ago.
Any credible organisation, he said, must be seen to be able to stand back from the hype and make an independent assessment of their sources and the facts.
Noting that the US had bombed “the hell out” of Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan since 2001 and their recent treatment of Black and Asian Americans within the US, Kua wondered what credibility the US has to talk of rights and freedoms.
“As organisations which advocate for the rights of civil society and the marginalised, we cannot be funded by a front for the CIA with its dreadful imperialist record.
“Such a situation leads to a crisis of legitimacy and deteriorating effectiveness for Malaysian NGOs in general.”
Malaysian NGOs, he added, must maintain a reputation for independence and legitimacy if they wish to have any credibility and be influential in the political process.
“NGOs will not be seen to be independent if they accept NED funding.”