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Tuesday May 20, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Tuesday May 20, 2014 MYT 6:54:54 AM
by lee yen mun
PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has urged the Government to review its diesel subsidy mechanism as the current arrangement leaves too many loopholes for abuse.
MACC deputy commissioner (operations) Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull said the Government has lost more than RM50mil due to fraudulent practices involving subsidised fuel since 2010.
In relation to this, more than 90 people have been detained on separate occasions, including individuals, syndicates, fishermen, petrol station owners and even enforcement officers, among others.
“With an increase in diesel subsidy handed out year by year, we believe that the losses borne by the Government will also rise,” said Mohd Shukri at a press conference in the MACC headquarters here yesterday.
Citing an example of a current shortcoming, Mohd Shukri said an individual can buy up to 200 litres of diesel per transaction.
However, a person can make multiple purchases within the same day just by going to several fuel stations.Furthermore, no identity verification is needed when purchasing fuel.
Mohd Shukri said MACC had made several recommendations to the Government in 2012 to review the diesel subsidy mechanism, including introducing the use of biometric data during purchase as well as to limit the amount dispensed according to vehicle type.
“But we have not received feedback on this,” said Mohd Shukri, adding that MACC had taken proactive measures to investigate complaints and tips-off related to diesel subsidy abuse.
Among the success stories so far is the confiscation of RM1.5mil from an enforcement officer, money believed to be gains from direct involvement in diesel smuggling.
Mohd Shukri said a ship was intercepted when smuggling 50,000 litres of diesel while some fuel stations were found to abet this illegal activity by allowing the sale of 1,000 litres of diesel in a single transaction.
“I am angry because such cases have really gone overboard. We are tired of hearing people say that MACC is sleeping on its job when this should really be the job of other (agencies) to stop the smuggling,” he said.
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