Abu Zahar: Media did not give full picture of Jan 5 press conference on Azam Baki

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Up to government, Agong to decide his fate as ACAB chairman.

Anti-Corruption Advisory Board (ACAB) chairman Tan Sri Abu Zahar Ujang today singled out the media, claiming that the full picture of his January 5 press conference concerning the proxy share trading controversy surrounding Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief Tan Sri Azam Baki was not properly related, exposing the former to criticism.

He added that in view of the public scrutiny he has been subject to, he decided to hold another press conference today “in the correct and accurate perspective”.

“Firstly, during the press conference a full 13-page media statement containing my entire statement was distributed, which, unfortunately, I also discovered, was not fully reported by some media so as to contribute to misconceptions among the public,” he said, reading from a prepared statement.

Bernama

Abu Zahar added that there were various issues other than those relating to allegations of misconduct against Azam, which the ACAB had given its views and opinions on but were not reported by the media.

“What’s more, the press conference video which went viral only showed a small part of my statement.

“Finally, if my media statement on January 5, 2022, had displayed an unintended misconception as stated above, to the extent that it tarnishes the good name of the MACC as a whole, which is not intended, I leave it to the absolute discretion of the government and His Majesty the Yang-di Pertuan Agong to determine my position as chairman of the ACAB, which is a trust that I have executed so far, without taking sides. I will definitely abide by that decision,” he said.

Abu Zahar added that as the ACAB chair, he is aware that the board has no power to conduct its own investigations in connection with any criminal misconduct against any MACC officer, and only has powers to provide views and suggestions on how investigations should be done in certain circumstances, according to the provisions under Section 13 (5) (a) of Act 694.

“The views and recommendations of the ACAB are clearly available in particular, on page six (ii) and (iii) therein, which neither intended nor intended to deter one thorough investigation by any government agency that is empowered and independent, to conduct formal investigations relating to allegations of misconduct against the chief commissioner, Tan Sri Azam Baki,” he added.

He also announced that he would not be taking any questions from the media during the press conference, expressing hope that his statement today should be enough to explain the issue. – MMO