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'Freezing PAC proof of 1MDB probe sabotage'

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Any move to stall the Public Accounts Committee's investigation into 1MDB will be proof that the cabinet reshuffle yesterday is aimed at sabotaging the investigation, DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang warns.

This comes is after Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, who is also finance minister, appointed four of the eight BN MPs in the PAC into the government.

Following this, PAC chairperson Nur Jazlan Mohamed, who was appointed as deputy home minister, said the committee was temporarily frozen pending the appointment of new members.

"Any attempt to halt the PAC investigations into the 1MDB scandal will be the best proof that the overriding objective of the cabinet reshuffle, is to block, frustrate, sabotage or drag out investigations into the biggest financial scandal in the nation’s history," Lim said in a press statement this morning.

The new cabinet appointments came just a week before the PAC is to hear from several top 1MDB executives who have been summoned for questioning.

Lim said he was surprised that Nur Jazlan ( photo ) accepted the appointment as the chartered accountant had previously expressed his desire to oversee the completion of the PAC's investigation into 1MDB.

Lim, who is also Gelang Patah MP, said following the four appointments, the PAC still comprises eight other members, which is still more than the minimum requirement of a quorum for the members to continue with the investigation.

"The PAC would be guilty of grave national disservice in not continuing with its investigations into 1MDB to uphold the principles of accountability, transparency, integrity and good governance as the bedrock foundations of Malaysian parliamentary democracy," he said.

Meanwhile, Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim urged Parliament to allow the opposition to lead the PAC following Nur Jazlan's departure as chairperson.

"In step with the best practices of other democracies in the world, the new chairperson of the PAC should be an opposition MP and the said chairperson can be appointed among the remaining members," Sim said in a statement.

Probe into Najib’s accounts also uncertain

A separate investigation into 1MDB by the special task force, which is also looking into claims that RM2.6 billion was deposited into Najib's private bank accounts, also faces uncertainty.

This is after attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail, who had helped coordinate the legal aspect for the special task force, was also sacked yesterday, the same day of the cabinet reshuffle.

The officer of the attorney-general is a key position, as it holds sole prosecutorial powers and investigations will be rendered moot if the office refuses to pursue a case.

The special task force is comprises the police, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and Bank Negara.

In a separate statement, PAS deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man ( photo ) expressed concern about attempts to discredit Bank Negara governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz, who is a member of the task force.

"Zeti's track record, performance and integrity as Bank Negara governor is recognised internationally.

"Therefore, any attempt to bring down Zeti while the 1MDB investigation is ongoing only fuels the perception that there was indeed abuse of power in 1MDB and that there is truth that 1MDB's funds went into Najib's private bank accounts,” Tuan Ibrahim said.

Najib has denied that he had taken any government funds for personal use.

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