The procurement sector recorded the highest complaints received by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), out of 10 sectors prone to corruption between 2013 and 2018.
- Six out of 10 complaints received by the MACC between 2013 and 2018 involved public sector
- RM1.8 trillion lost to corruption between 2005 and 2014
- Viewed as most corrupt – police, local government, public servants, politicians, judges, religious leaders
- 23% of Malaysians admitted to paying bribes in 2016
It was revealed, during the launch of the National Anti-Corruption Plan 2019-2023 (NACP) by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Tuesday (Jan 29), that in the last five years, the procurement sector recorded 42.8% of the total complaints.
It was followed by the enforcement sector at 23.9%, administration (13.4%), licensing and permits (8.6%), taxes (8.1%), businesses and industries (1.2%) and the judiciary (0.9%)
An MACC analysis during the period found that the main causes are because of weaknesses in the administration (36.43%), conflict of interest (33.12%), weak internal controls (18.97%) and lack of transparency (6.45%).
The analysis also states that political interference in the administration and financial management of the country, lack of political will, free and fair enforcement agencies and light punishment are among the hindrances to combat corruption in Malaysia.
“As public procurement accounts for a substantial portion of the taxpayers’ money, it has to be carried out efficiently, so as to safeguard the public interest,” the document stated.
For legal and judicial, it was pivotal to reform some of the existing laws by recommending and introducing changes to them. The reforms must ingrain the principle of separation of powers and put an end to external interference, which in turn would help to regain public respect and confidence.
Meanwhile, a good corporate governance regime would help to ensure that corporations used their capital efficiently and that corporations take into account the interest of all stakeholders within which they operated, it said.
Six out of 10 complaints received by the MACC between 2013 and 2018 involved the public sector.
Only 17.06% cases of corruption in the private sector were recorded during the same period.
Malaysia lost RM1.8 trillion to corruption according to the NACP report between 2005 and 2014.
A survey conducted by Transparency International for the Global Corruption Barometer in 2017, showed only 57% of Malaysians revealed that police were the most corrupt.
Judges and religious leaders were not spared as they were said to be corrupt at 33% and 31% respectively, 48% on local government, 45% in public servants and 41 % for politicians.
The survey of 1,009 people found that 23% of Malaysians admitted to paying bribes in 2016.
NACP was one of the 61 initiatives decided upon from the five meetings of the Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption since the formation of the Pakatan Harapan government that aims at shutting down space and opportunity for anyone involved in graft.
The plan includes 115 initiatives which the government hopes to implement within one to five years, in its efforts to ensure a corruption-free nation through measures promoting good governance, accountability and transparency.
The top leaders of Umno and PAS were among opposition leaders who were present at the launch of the new NACP.
“I have not studied the plan, but it is a good initiative to ensure corruption is eradicated,” acting Umno president Mohamad Hasan said.
PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang also expressed his support for the NACP, saying it was a collective duty to fight corruption.
“PAS values integrity and transparency in governance, and we are open to cooperating with everyone to cleanse Malaysia of corruption,” he said.