KUALA LUMPUR, March 13 — Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin’s statement about him having many files on government party leaders from his time as home minister, is a serious matter and should be given appropriate attention, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.
Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (JPM) (Law and Institutional Reform) Ramkarpal Singh said the investigation into the matter can only be done if a report was made for the police to open an investigation paper.
“Since the statement was made yesterday, I believe a report to the police or even to MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission) is needed before any investigation can be done.
“I think that’s the normal practice,” he said when winding up the debate on the Supply Bill 2023 at the committee level today.
Ramkarpal said this in reply to Gobind Singh Deo (DAP-Damansara) who wanted to know whether an investigation is being done on the statement by Larut Member of Parliament which he described as an abuse of power.
Hamzah, in a special interview with an English daily yesterday, claimed he had files in his possession which could implicate government leaders in wrongdoings, but said he was still thinking about whether to use them or not.
In another development, Ramkarpal said the MACC has opened 33 investigation papers against the alleged misappropriation of funds by the Malaysian Indian Transformation Unit (MITRA), with 10 cases brought to court across the country between 2021 and 2022.
“Investigations into the remaining cases are still ongoing with several actions have been taken including forfeiting and inspecting the weaknesses in the system and procedures related to MITRA funds,” he said.
Meanwhile, Minister in JPM (Sabah, Sarawak Affairs and Special Functions) Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali said the proposal to upgrade the Sabah and Sarawak Affairs Division under the JPM as a full ministry should take into account various aspects.
This includes the ruling government’s policy of not being so keen on having too many ministries and the existence of the Ministerial Functions Act 1969 which functions to oversee matters related to the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).
“Under the MA63, various issues are actually raised across the board, many ministries become caretakers. For example, in relation to deep sea farming activities, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change are managing the regulation of electricity and energy.
“So it is also necessary to take this matter into account because, in the end, the Sabah and Sarawak Affairs Division coordinates decisions involving several ministers with respective functions,” he said.
The Dewan Rakyat then passed the budget for JPM amounting to RM5.7 billion through voice voting.
The budget was for operating expenditures of agencies under the JPM, such as the Parliament (RM166,731,200), Election Commission (RM65,543,300) and Public Service Commission (RM42,380,200).
The Supply Bill 2023 with a total allocation of RM388.1 billion was the first budget tabled under the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
It was tabled on Feb 24 and was passed at the policy level on March 9. — Bernama