Expert tells why Azam’s accuser is no whistleblower

UK-based criminologist Kassim Noor Mohamed also says the MACC chief did the right thing to clear his name by suing Lalitha Kunaratnam.

(MalaysiaNow) – An expert in criminology has cautioned against calling activist Lalitha Kunaratnam a whistleblower, saying she does not qualify as one in the wake of several blog articles claiming to reveal information about the ownership of shares by Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief Azam Baki.

Kassim Noor Mohamed, a former senior customs officer with 20 years of enforcement and intelligence experience, said the information shared by Lalitha was available in the public domain and accessible to all.

“The information that was revealed concerning the shares was freely available,” Kassim, who is now based in the UK where he has lectured on criminal justice at various universities for more than a decade, told MalaysiaNow.

“Nothing was hidden. I do not think she fulfils the criteria for a whistleblower.”

He added that according to legal definitions, Lalitha had voluntarily revealed her identity when she decided not to report the alleged wrongdoings to the authorities and instead publicised them in the online media.

Following this, he said, the articles were shared on a number of platforms including social media, and with them her identity.

Azam has denied the claims made by Lalitha, who is linked to C4 Center, a local NGO led by activist Cynthia Gabriel.

The allegations were repeated by Cynthia’s fellow director at C4 Center, Edmund Terence Gomez, who also resigned from MACC’s consultative panel.

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