1MDB planning a walkout from PAC hearing?
Kit Siang ponders on why lawyer Shafee is so against Tony Pua making statements.
Are top executives of 1Malaysia Development Bhd plotting with their lawyer to stage a walkout at hearings of the Public Accounts Committee? DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang raised this possibility today after criticism arose of Tony Pua, a member of the committee. Free Malaysia Today reports:
Lim suggested that a script for the walkout was being prepared so that current and former executives of 1MDB could avoid answering the many questions about the troubled company and its dubious financial dealings and investments.
The drama would have 1MDB president and group executive director Arul Kanda Kandasamy and former 1MDB chief executive Shahrol Halmi walking out of the parliamentary hearings, probably escorted by Shafee as their counsel, and boycotting all PAC proceedings on the ground that committee member Tony Pua is “biased” and has not stepped down as a member of the committee.
Lim said the possibility of a 1MDB plot arose in his mind after reading that Umno lawyer Muhammad Shafee had demanded that MPs on the parliamentary committee who make public statements about 1MDB should be removed from the committee.
Pua, the MP for Petaling Jaya Utara, has been one of the biggest critics of 1MDB.
The Public Accounts Committee is parliament’s watchdog on the government’s use of public funds. It is empowered to summon witnesses and inquire into the government’s accounts and report to Parliament.
Lim said there was no reason for 1MDB, Shafee, and Najib Razak, who is 1MDB adviser, to fear Tony Pua’s inquiries. Even more MPs with strong views but without closed minds, such as Rafizi Ramli of PKR, the MP for Pandan, should be invited to take part in the hearings as “guest members” of the committee, Lim said.
Lim also criticised Johor Baru MP Shahrir Samad for joining Shafee in suggesting that Tony Pua be removed from the 1MDB hearing.