In Parliament, minister says MACC hasn’t quizzed her about Mitra scandal yet

National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique said her ministry will continue to cooperate with the MACC but would not be forming a separate committee or task force to investigate the scandal. — Bernama pic
National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique said her ministry will continue to cooperate with the MACC but would not be forming a separate committee or task force to investigate the scandal. — Bernama pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 23 — National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique said she has not been called in for questioning by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) regarding the Malaysian Indian Community Transformation Unit (Mitra) scandal.

She also said her ministry will continue to cooperate with the MACC but would not be forming a separate committee or task force to investigate the scandal.

“No, I haven’t been called in yet and we will continue to cooperate with the MACC in their investigations.

“So, unlike what many MPs here have said, we are not forming a separate committee to investigate the scandal,” Halimah said in the Dewan Rakyat today.

When Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran asked why she hadn’t started an oversight committee or launched her own internal investigation into the scandal, Halimad reiterated that she wanted to let the MACC conduct its investigations first.

“As for internal investigations, it will be done after MACC does theirs. To be fair, let them do the real investigations.

“They will check not only the companies, but also will look into the approval processes and who were the ones responsible for giving these approvals,” she added.

On October 15, the MACC said it had opened an investigation paper on allegations of misuse of funds under Mitra.

On October 25, 16 company directors were arrested for alleged misappropriation of funds under Mitra.

Allegations regarding the fund centred around estimated tens of millions of ringgit that were meant for a Mitra allocation grant to implement socio-economic programmes of the Indian community in Malaysia have been misused.

Opposition MPs have also been demanding MIC party leaders to be investigated over the allegations as well.

Mitra was restructured in 2018 during the Pakatan Harapan administration and placed under the Prime Minister’s Department.

However, from April 2020, Mitra was placed under the National Unity Ministry.

It is estimated that Mitra obtains a budget of RM100 million a year.

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