Way back in the 70's, Baretta make its debut and its motto "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time". Pure and simple, straight to the point. That was then...
Now in 2009, Selangor state government wanted to establish Competency, Accountability and Transparency. Big words and huge inspiration paralleled with rakyats' expectation. However, things get a little bit out of control and muddled after BH Teoh.
First, Khalid issued a circular mentioning that MACC may question state officers (either civil or political appointed) in state secretariat buildings only. Now, the AG chambers is seeking to set aside Selangor's circular regarding the issue. Whatever the reasons given by AG's office, there will always a party who is willing to stick their neck out to link the possibility of AG's actions with surrendering to federal government's wishes and commands.
To this scribe, whatever reasons put forth by the AG's chambers should be viewed positively and let the court decides in legality aspects.
Recent events have place an unseen barrier between MACC and the public. To some, MACC is seen as an obedient Fed's watchdog, ready to pounce PRs' lawmakers and workers. Their fear is not without substance.
What happens to Teresa Kok, BH Teoh, CH Wong, Sivarasa and countless others did not help to ease the mistrust towards Government bodies. Although all the names mentioned were not manhandled by MACC per se, the stigma is already planted. And MACC being one of the agencies under the spotlight, the mistrust is far reaching.
No doubt MACC did investigate BN supporters and poiticians too, but the manner MACC goes about carrying their duties are so contrasting. MACC, or rather their main officers will publicly issue statements when it comes to PR-linked persons but conspicuously quiet when BN-linked individuals are involved.
For our test case, let us zoom in on CH Wong's case and compared that to Tiong-Ong TK's public spat. For those who miss the boat, CH Wong is a special assistant to a Selangor EXCO member who was arrestedby MACC on 13th August 2009. During the commotion, CH Wong fell and he alledgedly accused his arresting officers of pushing him to the ground.
CH Wong did not respond to MACC's telephone calls and SMSs' since 5th August 2009. Why didn't CH Wong respond? Is he being stubborn or does he know that MACC has a case against him?
CH Wong finally responded on 13th August 2009 to inform that he is available on Aug 14 at Sg Pelek assemblyman service centre. Why did CH Wong choose the service center? Will it be better if CH Wong responded to meet MACC at Selangor state secretariat building?
MACC informed CH Wong that he would be taken to Putrajaya as his case documents are in Putrajaya. This indicate that MACC has pre-empt to arrest CH Wong. Will it be better if MACC make the appointment at Selangor state secretraiat? Why didn't MASS bring along their case documents to go through CH Wong, if that is applicable?
CH Wong claimed that he is bound by Selagor state secretary circular Bil 4, 2009. If he is bound by that circular, why didn't CH Wong make an effort to meet MACC in Selangor state secretariat building? What does circular bil 4, 2009 says? Why didn't MACC explain that their intention is to arrest CH Wong on 14th August and not to record statements from him?
Wong was told that he is under custody and need to follow MACC in MACC's car. Isn't CH Wong with his lawyers? Aren't lawyers officers of the court? Couldn't MACC allow CH Wong to travel to MACC's office in his lawyer's car with one of the MACC officers? Why couldn't CH Wong and MACC negotiate on this issue?
MACC claimed that their officers tried to stop CH Wong from escaping and hugged him from behind. Is CH Wong a dangerous criminal? If he is, why wasn't he handcuffed? If he is not, why couldn't MACC allow CH Wong to make his own way to MACC's office? Couldn't MACC use the court to order CH Wong to surrender?
To be fair, MACC has been accussed a lot of things lately. Some may be due to their own fault and some may be forced on them. To rebuild public's trust, MACC need to ask themselves :-
are they politic-blind in their investigation?
why do they publicly announce on opposition party members investigation but dead silent on BN-linked investigation?
do they follow standard operating procedures? Is there any need to investigate beyond normal office hours?
will it be better if they have new Commissioner who is untainted with accussations?
will it be better for MACC if their different panels meet regularly to guide their work?
will it be better if MACC is placed under direct supervision from the King?
will it be better if MACC officers are roped in from various departments such as police, immigration, customs, IRB, army, bank negara, fresh graduates from local and overseas etc? This will free MACC from being too dependent and too closely bonded with the police force. This will also strengthen MACC with various specialise fields.
Some may ask why nightcaller? It is my favourite TV series way back in the 80's.
Back then, Jack Killian @ nighthawk goes on the air nightly to talk about issues in USA whilst this scribe reach out to the netizens with apolitical views on issues that interest him inclusive of global issues. In commenting to other blogs, he goes by the nick nightcaller with the callsign "Till then...G'nite M'sia...wherever u are..."