Malaysia's DPM says cops targeting info leak not anti-corruption agency amid recent raids

Dr Ahmad Zahid said the moves by the police were made so as to protect the investigation.
Dr Ahmad Zahid said the moves by the police were made so as to protect the investigation.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The police are only investigating information leaks on the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal and not the country's anti-corruption agency, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said on Friday, amid a string of arrests and raids linked to the agency.

A rift between the police and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has grown over the past week following recent police raids on MACC offices in the 1MDB investigation.

MACC officers have also been questioned in the course of police investigations into the alleged leaks, which have led to damaging media exposes against troubled state investor 1MDB and its chief adviser, Prime Minister Najib Razak.

Dr Ahmad Zahid said the moves by the police were made so as to protect the investigation.

"They are investigating the leakage of documents and information that had been spread in social media," he said. "The authorities do not want to see information on an ongoing investigation being leaked."

He said officers from other agencies would also be called up to help in the probe.

"Everything is done according to the SOP. Police are not targeting any agencies or personnel," he added.

Dr Ahmad Zahid made the comments after receiving a courtesy call from Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali in Putrajaya on Friday.

His remarks came a day after the police denied taking instructions from others or interfering with the work of the MACC.

Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Noor Rashid Ibrahim said their focus was on the leakage of information, which contravenes the Banking and Financial Institutions Act (Bafia).

He said the leak was not only about the alleged draft charge sheet against Datuk Seri Najib, but also the leak of personal banking information which was against Bafia.

Noor Rashid added that the person responsible for the leak would not be protected under the Whistleblower Protection Act.

Senior MACC officials have insinuated that the police were acting on instructions of someone higher up. But Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar had also echoed Noor Rashid's views that the police were only performing their duty and were not acting on pressure or directives from anybody.