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PM: Freedom of Information Act to replace OSA

The Freedom of Information Act will be drawn up to replace the Official Secrets Act 1972, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today.

Mahathir said the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption, which met today, has agreed in principle that sufficient time must be given to the process of drawing up the law.

“This is to allow for sufficient engagement and outreach sessions with the public,” he said in a press conference held after chairing the meeting in Putrajaya today.

Also present were Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, Chief Secretary Ismail Bakar and Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption Centre director-general Abu Kassim Mohamed.

Mahathir said the meeting also discussed the scope of the Government Procurement Act, which will be drawn up by the Finance Ministry.

"The bill is expected to be tabled in Parliament in the middle of 2020," the prime minister said.

In his Budget 2019 speech, Lim said the Government Procurement Bill will be tabled in Parliament to increase integrity in the public procurement process, and reduce leakages in government spending.

Mahathir said the meeting also discussed five proposals made by the Securities Commission to boost corporate governance practices in capital markets to curb corruption and fraud.

“The meeting agreed in principle with several proposals submitted by the SC, which will be discussed by the National Debt Management Committee,” he said.

The prime minister said the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption was also informed of the findings of the National Anti-Corruption Committee Meeting that there was a need to increase the anti-corruption training given to civil servants.

He said this includes reviving the Integrity Management Module (MPI) and empowering the Integrity Units in public agencies.

- Bernama

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