Anwar defends PAC deputy chief’s appointment to head green energy authority

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim says Public Accounts Committee deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh’s selection to lead the Sustainable Energy Development Authority is permissible as it is not a GLC. — Picture by Miera Zulyana
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim says Public Accounts Committee deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh’s selection to lead the Sustainable Energy Development Authority is permissible as it is not a GLC. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, July 26 — Public Accounts Committee deputy chairman Wong Kah Woh’s selection to lead the Sustainable Energy Development Authority (Seda) is permissible as it is not a government-linked corporation (GLC), Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said today.

He explained that while Pakatan Harapan’s stand against political appointees at GLCs was clear, this does not preclude the appointment of politicians to statutory bodies such as Seda.

“[Not] all politicians who would be appointed are incapable or corrupt. If the person is suited and capable, we would consider it.

“We do not reject them because they are not suitable. But it is PH’s stance to not have [political] appointees,” the chairman of the parliamentary caucus on reform and governance said at a press conference here today.

Earlier at the Malaysian Economic Symposium 2019, academic Edmund Terence Gomez had questioned how the ruling party manages government-linked companies (GLCs) and government-linked investment companies (GLIC), including the need to move all the entities under the Prime Minister’s Department purview from the Finance Ministry.

PH had in its election manifesto pledged that the prime minister would not hold on to the finance minister post as the previous administration did.

When asked by reporters whether the move was political hypocrisy, Anwar dismissed the claim.

“No, I don’t believe so because Khazanah [and] Petronas are national holdings. I think for the transition [period], that may be acceptable.

“People don’t consider that as a business arrangement that the prime minister is involved in,” he said.

Anwar had earlier delivered his concluding remarks at the first economic symposium which was set up as an engagement platform with stakeholders on the direction on Malaysia’s economy and review of the country’s economic performance.

The symposium saw three presentations by deputy director-general (macro) of the Economic Affairs Ministry Zakiah Jaafar, Bank Negara Malaysia governor Datuk Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus, as well as Gomez, who is also a Universiti Malaya professor.

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