The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) clarified today that only 18 farmers were called to have their statements recorded for an ongoing probe, after a coalition of Raub durian farmers criticised the agency for its communication breakdown.
This comes after MACC chief commissioner Datuk Seri Azam Baki earlier today denied the agency had summoned durian farmers in Raub, Pahang, who are accused of running illegal farms as alleged.
“The MACC would like to stress that only 18 farmers were called to have their statements recorded, not 50 or 30 farmers as alleged by certain quarters.
“For the record, 12 more individuals were also present, but none were involved with the investigations.
“We would also like to explain that the denial made by the MACC chief over the issue was in reference to the total number of farmers called to assist investigations,” it said in a statement.
The Save Musang King Alliance (Samka) then refuted Azam’s remarks, describing them as inconsistent with the facts.
Azam made the comments earlier today after officiating a forum on corporate liability, claiming the story was “made up”.
Samka had yesterday claimed in a statement that around 50 farmers had been contacted by the MACC or visited by its officers at their homes.
The agency also said no arrests have been made to date and that it would continue to summon relevant parties to assist its probe from time to time.
“The MACC conducts its investigation in accordance with the law whereby the MACC is not pressured by any parties to obtain said statements on the issue.
“The MACC also wishes for all parties involved to not speculate on it and allow the MACC space to conduct its investigations,” it said. – MMO