Prof: It’s hard to fight graft when we are always willing to make exceptions

  • Nation
  • Friday, 12 Dec 2014

GEORGE TOWN: Malaysians talk about fighting graft but often bend the rules if it is in their favour, a Universiti Sains Malaysia expert on the study of crime and criminals said.

“Even many of us, who are gene­rally law-abiding citizens, people of integrity, people of high ethical standards, we are willing to bend the rules,” said USM criminologist Assoc Prof Dr P. Sundramoorthy.

“This is the culture of this country as much as we are critical of some other nations.

“The weakness in our country is that we are willing to make exceptions when it is in our favour. Yet, we speak about fighting corruption,” he told delegates at the Membanteras Rasuah Tanggungjawab Bersama seminar and dialogue, organised by the Penang branch of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) at Hotel Royal here on Wednesday.

“The ‘givers’ are plenty. I leave the ‘receivers’, they are always there. We are always willing to ‘settle’ matters in this nation. Where do we draw the line?

“Everyone speaks against corruption but are we actually addressing the issue?” he said.

Dr Sundramoorthy, who supports the proposed amendment to the Federal Constitution to make the MACC autonomous and independent of the civil service, said the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in Hong Kong was one of the most reputable anti-corruption commissions in the world because it was able to operate independently,

Malaysian Integrity Institute socio-cultural sector deputy director Anuar Ahmad, who is also in favour of the proposal, commented on the corporate liability provision under the MACC Act which will make companies responsible for the corrupt practices of their employees.

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