First published in Free Malaysia Today

By FMT Reporters, (c) 2016, MToday News Sdn. Bhd(c) 2016

PETALING JAYA: Granting prosecutorial powers to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) will result in a conflict of interest, the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) said today.

In a statement, the think tank’s CEO Wan Saiful Wan Jan said while the anti-graft agency must be elevated to a higher position, granting it the power to prosecute was not the way to achieve it.

It was better, he argued, if the role of the Public Prosecutor was separated from that of the Attorney-General (AG).

“Giving the MACC prosecutorial power will create a new conflict of interest wherein the MACC will be under internal pressure to prosecute after they complete their own investigation,” he said in response to a call by the National Human Rights Society (Hakam) for MACC to be given the power to prosecute.

Wan Saiful also emphasised the need for reform in the AG’s office, and urged politicians to consider making this part of their manifesto in the 14th General Election.

He said he was “really glad” Hakam wanted to separate the role of the Public Prosecutor from that of the AG.

“This has been our call too since last year and we need more civil society organisations to voice the demand to make this happen.”

Wan Saiful also supported Hakam’s call for the setting-up of an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC).

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