Azam Baki should cease attempt to victimize whistleblower, says Gomez
SHAH ALAM: Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki’s move to send a Letter of Demand (LOD) to a whistleblower is nothing more than serious intimidation.
The whistleblower has been reported to be Lalitha Kunaratnam, whose articles were carried by the Independent News Service or INS. Professor Edmund Terence Gomez, who recently quit the MACC Consultation and Corruption Prevention Panel, said if whistleblowers were threatened in this way by those of power, there will be no progress in getting citizens to expose corruption and protect them from doing so.
This, he said, was the same long trend seen in Malaysia.
“Azam’s lawyers are demanding that the whistleblower apologize for a report she has written on this matter, issue a public apology, and pay damages amounting to RM10 million.
“The whistle-blower received this LOD today,” he said in a statement today.
Gomez said he was shocked and appalled that this whistle-blower (Lalitha), who wrote to him about the allegations involving Azam’s business interests, was being sued.
He said the whistleblower raised legitimate questions of national interest.
“What Azam should be doing is publicly disclosing all his business interests in order to protect the image and integrity of the MACC,” he said.
Gomez called on Azam to withdraw the LOD immediately and cease his attempt to victimize the whistleblower.
He also called on the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader to jointly act and begin an immediate review of the functioning of the MACC.
He added the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob must also act immediately to create an independent panel to review the allegations of Azam’s business interests.