Malaysian police confirms probe into PAS president's corruption comments

PAS president Tan Sri Abdul Hadi Awang attributed the cause of corruption in Malaysia to non-Muslims and non-bumiputeras. PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The police will be calling up Malaysian politician Tan Sri Abdul Hadi Awang in connection with the Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) president's recent statement that attributed the cause of corruption in the country to non-Muslims and non-bumiputeras.

In a statement on Sunday (Aug 28), Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) corporate communications chief Skandaguru Anandan said investigations were under way, with 28 reports lodged against the Marang MP so far over his comments.

"Investigations are being conducted by the Prosecution and Law Division of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Bukit Aman under Section 505(C) of the Penal Code and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998. He will also be called to Bukit Aman (PDRM headquarters) to assist investigations," he said.

Section 505(C) of the Penal Code deals with making, publishing or circulating any statement, rumour or report with intent to incite or which is likely to incite any class or community of persons to commit any offence against any other class or community of persons. Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 is related to the improper use of network facilities or network services.

Mr Skandaguru urged the public not to speculate or make any statements that could disrupt investigations.

PAS president Abdul Hadi had come under fire for claiming earlier this month that the root cause of corruption in the country was due to the influence non-Malays wielded over the economy and politics.

“These groups who chase illicit gains... damage our politics as they are the roots for corruption and the majority of them are non-Muslims and non-Bumiputras,” he said in a Facebook post on Aug 20.

He said this had allowed non-Malays to dictate terms to the Malays and bumiputeras, or the country's indigenous people, which in turn made the Malays become corrupted and entangled in financial scandals.

Malaysian Chinese Association secretary-general Datuk Chong Sin Woon expressed shock at Mr Hadi’s statement, demanding he withdraw it immediately.

“It cannot be emphasised enough that no reasonable person would ever link the issue of graft with race and religion. Such misinformation is appalling, more so coming from a seasoned political leader,” he said a day after Mr Hadi made his statement.

Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto said Malaysians did not deserve a leader like Mr Hadi, who she said was unable to look at any issue without his racist lens.

She said that his “venomous politics” had no place in the country, especially when Malaysians are getting ready to celebrate National Day soon on Wednesday (Aug 31).

Civil service organisation G25, comprising influential Malays in Malaysia, said political lobbyists were the real “movers and shakers of corruption” in the country, not non-Muslims.

The lobbyists go for whoever can offer them the best deal, or a “success fee”, for introducing investors or businessmen to high-level contacts such as government ministers, said the group.

“It is therefore not right to blame the non-Malays as the big players in the corruption scandals,” the G25 said.

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