KUALA LUMPUR, June 9 ― The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) advisory board advised the government today against appointing politicians to head government-linked companies (GLCs), amid the crisis in Felda Global Ventures (FGV).
The board reasoned that most politicians bring their political habits along to the business they are handling, which it said results in unscrupulous practices when they run the business.
“The Advisory Board wishes to express in the strongest possible terms its concern about the government’s long-held practice of appointing party politicians as chairmen of GLCs.
“In every instance, they have fallen well below the ethical standards we have come to expect from those in positions of trust,” chairman Tunku Abdul Aziz Tunku Ibrahim said in a statement today.
He went on to explain that despite there being some ethical politicians, most of them do not have the discipline of being a good corporate leader, and as such Putrajaya should help curb the practice to avoid further corruption.
“Politicians, by and large, bring to the job the political habits…which are at variance with the requirements of disciplined corporate leadership, based on uncompromising trust.
“The government has a clear duty to do away with this unhealthy practice which is not helping in the fight against corruption,” Tunku Aziz said.
Touching on the FGV case, the board praised the MACC for its swift investigation as it was a high profile case.
Tunku Aziz also noted that as the case is of “immense public interest”, the concerns of corruption in FGV have to immediately be addressed.
FGV president and CEO Datuk Zakaria Arshad and three other FGV officials have been put on indefinite leave this week pending internal scrutiny into alleged irregularities over the delayed payment owed to a subsidiary, Delima Oil Products Sdn Bhd, and Afghan firm Safitex.
The others suspended alongside Zakaria were FGV chief financial officer Ahmad Tifli Mohd Talha, FGV Trading chief executive officer Ahmad Salman Omar, and Delima Oil Products senior general manager Kamarzaman Abd Karim.