THE HONEST WILL ALWAYS SAY ‘YES’ TO ONE’S DECLARATION OF WEALTH!

Dr Jacob George is president and legal adviser to the Consumers Association of Subang and Shah Alam (Cassa)

THE HONEST WILL ALWAYS SAY ‘YES’ TO ONE’S DECLARATION OF WEALTH!

It is a brilliant idea of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) that all public office holders be they politicians, ministers or others to declare their assets publicly and have a system where it comes under the purview of the Malaysian Parliament!

The largest Islamic nation in the world Indonesia, our southern neighbor Singapore and the United States of America have their leader’s and aspiring leaders declare their assets which are regularly monitored during one’s public office tenure!

Nothing strange about this as those who aspire to hold high public office has the obligation to be open to public scrutiny when they assume office.

This is not open to negotiation if one is serious about good governance, transparency, accountability and zero tolerance for corruption and abuse of political power!

There is nothing to discuss let alone speculate or justify!

Only the corrupt and those who have amassed wealth using their public office will fear declaration!

They fear the declaration because their earnings in public office cannot justify the flamboyant lifestyles lived by them and their extended families!

This includes the assets they have accumulated here and abroad!

This has got nothing to do with privacy!

So if we want to address corruption we must be brave to spearhead accountability, good governance and transparency!

If we want to put the nation back on its fair footing and be competitive we must take honest and dedicated actions – in removing leakages, cost over-runs, the magnification of costs of products and services by some vulgar definition of nationalism!

We must have the dedication and religious conviction to push for a public declaration!

Soon we are going into the various Holy months of prayer, fasting, and reflection and what better time than during this season to launch this drive without fear or favor if we are God Fearing honest men and women?

It is important so that we will not be paying for a product US$300 Million when it is only US$30 Million because various ‘political leeches with honorifics’ and their purse strings need to be filled so that they can live a flamboyant lifestyle at the nation’s expense?

One must remember the political landscape and climate in Malaysia has changed drastically and it never will return to the pre 2008 climate – period!

I know Prime Minister Najib Razak has taken many a great and challenging steps in addressing great anomalies facing the nation.

He has in many instants ‘gone in alone’ because of his sincerity, dedication and vision and I pray that he will take a stand once again, even, if his political colleagues dissent to make the declaration of one’s assets and wealth public for all those in public office!

‘KERA DI HUTAN DIBERI SUSU ANAK DIRUMAH MATI KEBULURAN’

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