Call for opposition leaders to declare assets reasonable, says political analyst

The call for opposition leaders to declare assets to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is reasonable and important in the context of public perception. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
The call for opposition leaders to declare assets to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is reasonable and important in the context of public perception. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, March 13 — The call for opposition leaders to declare assets to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is reasonable and important in the context of public perception.

The move is a proof of transparency, integrity and the willingness of a leader or elected representative either from the government or the opposition to carry out the responsibilities entrusted to them.

Political analyst and professor at Department of Government and Civilisation Studies, Faculty of Human Ecology, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Prof Dr Zaid Ahmad said it was an easy step to showcase a leader’s commitment.

While it could be made mandatory for each lawmaker to declare their assets, it was actually on a voluntary basis and more of a leader’s own responsibility, he said.

“For example, if there is a leader who refuses to declare his assets it will certainly create perceptions and raise questions among the people as if there is something that the particular leader tries to hide,” he said.

“People want to see the leader’s transparency and sincerity and the move also shows his readiness to be criticised and evaluated by the people,” he said when contacted by Bernama today.

At the Dewan Rakyat sitting yesterday, Johor Bharu MP Akmal Nasrullah Mohd Nasir when debating on the motion of thanks of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s royal address, urged the opposition leaders, especially from UMNO and PAS to declare their assets to ensure the integrity and transparency.

Prior to this, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government required all Cabinet ministers and MPs including their spouses and children to declare their assets after forming a government last year.

The move was in line with the promise of the PH manifesto in the 14th General Election which pledged to oblige all MPs, members of the Senate and senior government officials under the Jusa C grade and above to declare their assets and income. — Bernama