Semporna MP Mohd Shafie Apdal says it is “amusing” that Sabahan authorities are in such a haste to plead their innocence about Sabah water projects being investigated for corruption.
In a statement issued today, Shafie said the state authorities, in trying to divert blame to the federal Rural Regional Development Ministry, while investigations were under way by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, showed little respect and confidence in the MACC.
Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Pairin Kitingan had said yesterday that the state government had nothing to do with the federal allocations of RM3.3 billion to the Sabah Water Department.
Anti-corruption officials have said as much as 60 per cent of the money had been siphoned off.
Kitingan was quoted by The Star as saying that the projects, allocated since 2010, were under the Rural and Regional Development Ministry during Shafie’s tenure as the Minister.
Shafie chose to reserve his response on the matter saying that he wanted to be sure that investigations went along smoothly.
“We must not interfere or be seen to be interfering with the ongoing investigation by making public statements and pleas of innocence so as to ensure that the integrity of the investigation by the MACC is not compromised.
“If I am requested to assist in the investigation, I am more than willing to cooperate and give my assistance in any manner that I can.”
Pairin, who is state Industrial Development Minister, said his ministry had no knowledge of the allocations as the Water Department was the implementing agency for the federal funds.
Pairin said the project procurement and payments were handled by the federal ministry and the Water Department.
Investigators are looking into the possibility of some VIPS having links to the bribery and money laundering that have now been uncovered.
FMT Reporters Online