PH leaders: Stop bickering

Unperturbed: Filepic of Latheefa signing in on her first day as MACC chief at MACC headquarters in Putrajaya on Friday.

PETALING JAYA: Even as they questioned the manner in which Latheefa Koya was made Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner, several Pakatan Harapan leaders say it is time to stop bickering and let her do the job.

DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang said the realisation of Malaysia Baharu depended on Latheefa’s success in making the country corruption-free.

“The Pakatan Harapan government must be able to achieve greater headway in the goal to build a New Malaysia and the battle against corruption is one of its principal objectives,” the Iskandar Puteri MP said in a statement yesterday.

PKR vice-president Tian Chua said that while certain individuals might have misgivings about Latheefa’s appointment, attacking her personally was offensive and tantamount to undermining the MACC and its functions.

“As Pakatan’s key promise is to build a corruption-free political system, the job of eradicating abuses is very challenging,” he said in a statement.

He said in the era of Malaysia Baharu, many activists like Latheefa and himself were finding ways to utilise their abilities to help rebuild Malaysia, adding that he was happy that the ex-PKR member had found her role.

“Her role is to realise the people’s hopes for a corrupt-free society that we can all be proud of. I wish her the best of luck. Her success will be our nation’s success,” he said.

While they lauded Latheefa’s appointment by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Lim and Tian Chua described her appointment as “legally correct but politically wrong”.

They were of the opinion that the appointment should have been approved by the Parliamentary Select Committee on Major Public Appointments.

Johor PKR chief Hassan Abdul Karim said the Pakatan leadership should not allow Latheefa’s appointment to cause cracks in the party, adding that it was time to close ranks and move forward in unity.

“The Prime Minister has announced that his decision is final on the appointment. Whether we like it or not, we have to accept the decision,” he said.

Support for Latheefa is growing stronger with more people signing an online petition lauding her appointment.

Meanwhile, PSC chairman William Leong said the body was determined to meet Dr Mahathir to determine its functions.

“We plan to call a meeting by Thursday or Friday to discuss the meeting with the Prime Minister as well as Latheefa’s appointment,” said Leong, who is PKR’s Selayang MP.

As part of its promise to restore the dignity of Parliament, Pakatan had stated in its GE14 manifesto that key national positions such as appointments to the Human Rights Commission, Election Commission, MACC and Judicial Appointments Commission must be approved by a suitable parliamentary committee.

On Wednesday, Dr Mahathir said that Latheefa’s appointment was a decision he made on his own without discussing it with the Cabinet.

On Saturday, he stated that his decision to appoint Latheefa was final.

Latheefa replaced Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull, who opted to shorten his two-year contract which ends in May 2020.

Latheefa quit PKR as an ordinary member on June 3 before her appointment was announced the next day.


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