PAC wants special audit into procurement of medical equipment following graft allegations

PETALING JAYA: The Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) wants a special audit to be carried out on the procurement of medical equipment and medicine during the Covid-19 pandemic following allegations of corruption.

"I had officially brought the matter up with the Auditor-General on Thursday (May 26) for a special audit to be carried out on the procurement of medical equipment and medicine during the Covid-19 pandemic," its chairman Wong Kah Woh said in the statement on Friday (May 27).

He said the audit was necessary as questions over abuse of power in aid distribution and stimulus packages given out by the government were raised.

"The audit should be expedited with the report tabled before the bi-partisan committee as soon as possible.

"This will allow the PAC to identify if there exists irregularities, leakages or abuse of power in the procurement of such medical services," he said.

On Tuesday (May 24) Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission (MACC) chief Tan Sri Azam Baki said that there were elements of corruption uncovered involving the procurement of medical equipment and medicine during the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said among instances of abuse of power were diverting relief aid, fraud related to falsified medical protective equipment and the bribery of enforcement officers when enforcing the movement control order.

Wong said the PAC is empowered by Parliament to call up the Finance Ministry, MACC and agencies involved to give an explanation over the issue once the audit report is tabled.

He said this is based on the mandate given to the PAC by Parliament to keep a check on government expenditure to ensure compliance of the law.

"The PAC will not compromise with any party that tries to reap profits for personal gains," Wong said.

On Thursday (May 26), former Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said he will cooperate with the MACC with regard to their investigations into the matter.

He acknowledged that emergency procurements made in the wake of the pandemic outbreak were not done according to standard procedures and there was confusion when implementing it.

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