PUTRAJAYA: The appointment of the Auditor-General will be made by a Parliamentary Select Committee, removing the authority from the Prime Minister.
According to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, this was among the reforms agreed by the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption, which met for the third time on Monday.
“Through national audits, we are able to know if government administration is done according to the rules.
“At present, the National Audit Department is placed under the Prime Minister’s Department.
“The appointment of the Auditor-General is made by the Prime Minister.
“We have agreed to move this authority to a Parliamentary Select Committee. Therefore, the Prime Minister and the Government will not have any involvement in the Auditor-General’s appointment.
“The Prime Minister will also not have any power to punish or sack anyone in the National Audit Department,” said Dr Mahathir at a press conference here after the committee’s meeting.
The budget for the National Audit Department will also be decided by the Parliamentary Select Committee, he added.
Dr Mahathir said the reforms will help to reduce corruption in the country.
“We will have to wait for a while to see the effects of these reforms. Hopefully, we can see a reduction in corruption in the country,” he said.
Dr Mahathir said certain reforms proposed by the Government would require constitutional amendments, and therefore needed the support of Opposition MPs.
Among the reforms that would require constitutional amendments include limiting the Prime Minister’s tenure.
“We do not have two-thirds majority in Parliament. But if we can get the assurance of Opposition parties that they will support the amendments, only then will we table it,” he said.
One of Pakatan Harapan’s election pledges was to reduce the Prime Minister’s tenure to two terms.
Tan Sri Dr Madinah Mohamad is currently the Auditor-General.