PAS Youth says Azam should go on leave, takes different stance from party sec-gen

PETALING JAYA: PAS Youth has called on the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chairman Tan Sri Azam Baki (pic) to go on leave until investigations into the matter are completed, in contrast with the stance taken by the Islamist party’s secretary-general Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan.

PAS Youth chief Ahmad Fadhli Shaari said he respected Azam as an anti-graft leader during several Public Accounts Committee (PAC) hearings, but said he should take leave to allow investigations into the matter to take place.

“PAS Youth, with respect, urges everyone involved – including the MACC’s highest officer – to take leave until investigations are completed.

“This is to ensure transparency in investigations and to prove the government’s seriousness in upholding the rule of law,” said Ahmad Fadhli in a statement on Thursday (Jan 6) afternoon.

Ahmad said PAS Youth had been following the issue and believed the government should take immediate action and conduct an independent investigation.

“This must be taken seriously by the government in order to address any negative perception towards the government and the country, as well as ensuring that integrity is upheld,” added the Pasir MAS MP.

Takiyuddin later issued a statement on Thursday (Jan 6) night which was in contrast with Ahmad’s remarks.

He said PAS was confident that Azam’s explanation would be scrutinised by the authorities.

Takiyuddin also welcomed Azam’s explanation on the issue, saying that it was the right move to publicly answer to accusations hurled at him.

“It was the right move as it concerns MACC’s integrity as the national anti-graft agency,” he said.

Takiyuddin also said he hoped that Azam’s explanation would stop further accusations against the MACC chief commissioner, as it undermined Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s leadership.

“The burden of proof now lies on those who continue hurling accusations,” he said.

Speaking to The Star on Thursday (Jan 6), Azam said he would cooperate with the Securities Commission (SC) and expects to meet them next week.

On Wednesday (Jan 5), Azam said his brother had used his trading account to buy shares in the open market and financed the purchases himself.

It involved substantial amounts of shares from Gets Global Bhd and Excel Force MSC Bhd between 2015 and 2016 when Azam was the MACC director of investigations.

Azam said the same explanation was given to the MACC’s Anti-Corruption Advisory Board (ACAB) after he was summoned to explain the matter on Nov 24.

Azam also maintained that he did not commit any wrongdoing, adding that action will be taken against those who had tarnished his reputation and that of the MACC.