Unwarranted questioning of Selangor Menteri Besar’s Office
5 September 2017
Lawyers for Liberty view with serious concern the MACC’s unwarranted questioning of Selangor Menteri Besar’s Office Communications Director Yin Shao Loong on 29 August 2017 over his press statement regarding MACC’s raid on Menteri Besar Incorporated (MBI) and University Selangor (Unisel) offices. MBI and Unisel were under investigation for alleged impropriety in awarding monetary compensation and a new contract to Unisel’s contractor Jana Niaga.
As the Communications Director to the Menteri Besar’s Office, it is clear Shao Loong has no specific involvement in the transactions under investigation. He was merely performing his duty as the press officer to inform the public on the Menteri Besar Office’s view on the MACC raid.
In the statement, he conveyed the Selangor State Government’s concern regarding the raid as an orchestrated attempt to tarnish the state government’s image and further called for the MACC to be more professional and not to be influenced by political considerations.
The nature of the questions directed at Shao Loong are clearly irrelevant as among others, he was asked regarding his tweet stating that he was going to the MACC for questioning and whether he had the authority to issue the statement. He was also asked why he had issued the statement before investigation was completed which was again irrelevant.
It was evident that these questions were not serious and unrelated to the investigation. This whole exercise was vexatious and intended to intimidate Shao Loong and others from speaking out while MBI and Unisel are under investigations.
We wish to remind the MACC that it is the right of those under investigations to defend themselves publicly, all the more so in this case, as it involves alleged improprieties of public funds. All law enforcement agencies must be open to questions and criticisms, and they must not abuse their powers to summon and question persons unconnected to the investigations.
We call upon the MACC to be more professional and impartial in their investigations. The MACC should not be unduly sensitive to public criticisms, regardless of whether they are valid or not, as such criticisms are to be expected in a democracy.
Let MACC’s performance on the job speak for itself rather than attempting to stifle public criticism and the freedom of speech and expression as guaranteed under Article 10 of the Federal Constitution.
Lawyers for Liberty