KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 — All four Opposition MPs on the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) overseeing Agencies in the Prime Minister's Department have insisted today that the hearing for Tan Sri Azam Baki should go ahead as scheduled on January 19.

The four MPs had, in a joint press conference today, said the hearing should not be postponed even if Azam would not be appearing before the committee.

“Who is Azam Baki that he can refuse to appear for a hearing with the PSC?

“Who is he to override Parliament?” said DAP's Kota Melaka MP Khoo Poay Tiong, one of the MPs who was present at the press conference conducted via Zoom.

The four MPs were responding to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner’s refusal to attend the hearing, on the grounds that his testimony to the Agencies Committee violated the Dewan Rakyat Standing Orders that do not allow Parliament to discuss matters pending in courts.

According to news reports, Azam initiated legal action against an activist who accused him of owning a large equity stake in a public-listed company, possibly in violation of rules governing civil servants.

He had also argued that he was already being investigated by the Securities Commission and the MACC Complaints Committee.

The Opposition MPs, however, said regardless of the reasons given by Azam, he should still attend the hearing to explain himself.

“Whether he wants to share his testimony or not, he has to attend the hearing to tell the committee his reasons for refusal.

“Whatever his reason for not attending, he has to be present himself to say it,” said Khoo.

The four MPs added that even if Azam did not attend the hearing, matters such as the terms of reference and list of witnesses can be discussed and decided upon instead.

“This could be a time where the authority of select committees is to determine whether there are mechanisms that are effective in conducting investigations and disciplinary action,” said Khoo.

Azam had admitted in a press conference earlier this month that he had allowed his younger brother, Nasir Baki, to use his stock trading account to buy millions worth of shares in two public-listed companies back in 2015.

He denied any wrongdoing, saying the amount has since been transferred to Nasir’s account. However, he has not explained publicly why Nasir had to use his account to buy those shares.

On January 8, Azam said he is ready for his alleged misconduct case to be referred to the MACC’s Complaints Committee.