Opposition zooms in on Zahid’s DNAA


OPPOSITION lawmakers continued to criticise the government over Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s graft case during their debate on the Mid-Term Review of the 12th Malaysia Plan.

“Everyone is now talking about this,” Opposition chief whip Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan said.

“Where are the voices that defend justice such as former Iskandar Puteri MP Tan Sri Lim Kit Siang, where is YB Bagan (Lim Guan Eng), where is YB Damansara (Gobind Singh Deo) and the others?

“They had previously talked about justice to defend the rakyat but now on the DNAA, they are totally silent without any voice,” he said, referring to the discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA) granted to Ahmad Zahid by the court last week.

Takiyuddin said the case had even caught the attention of foreign media, which described it as having a negative impact on the nation and the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

On Sept 4, Ahmad Zahid was discharged but not acquitted of 47 graft charges involving Yayasan Akalbudi funds.

Former attorney general (AG) Tan Sri Idrus Harun has been called to explain the DNAA to a Parliamentary Special Select Committee.

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin (PN-Larut) demanded that Ahmad Zahid’s DNAA be debated in Parliament.

He said that four years of the court’s time and taxpayer money were wasted following the DNAA.

Hamzah alleged that public perception was that there was outside interference which resulted in the DNAA.

“That is why we want it to be brought to Parliament,” he said when debating the Mid-Term Review.

Hamzah also asked if the prime minister had exerted any influence on the AG.

Anwar had previously said he did not interfere in the operations of enforcement agencies or the AG.

Wan Ahmad Fayshal Wan Ahmad Kamal (PN-Machang) said the AG should provide Parliament with a list of corruption cases that had been withdrawn.

Wan Ahmad Fayshal’s emergency motion to debate Ahmad Zahid’s court case had earlier been denied by Dewan Rakyat Deputy Speaker Datuk Ramli Mohd Nor.

Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman (Muda-Muar), who is now sitting with the Opposition bloc, called out the government for its “hypocrisy”.

“We are not casting improper motives on an MP but on the entire government.

“Previously, they said that they will fight corruption, no cases will be dropped and kleptocrats will be imprisoned. (But now) they have been freed,” he said before Ramli turned off his mic.

Ramli then reminded Syed Saddiq not to waste his time, adding that “99%” of the issues raised by the Opposition MPs who spoke before him were related to the same matter.

Ramli, however, granted Syed Saddiq another 30 seconds to finish his statement before proceeding with the order of the day.

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