KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 7 — PAS secretary-general Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan welcomed Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief Tan Sri Azam Baki’s explanation on his stock trading scandal, alleging that the accusations aimed against the latter were intended to undermine Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s government.
In a statement last night, Takiyuddin said PAS hopes that Azam’s explanation over the scandal would put the issue to rest, adding that the burden of proof now lies in the hands of the accusers.
“PAS welcomes MACC Chief Tan Sri Azam Baki’s statement yesterday, who openly addressed several accusations — including by the media — on the issue of stocks in several companies.
“PAS is confident that the authorities will review (Azam’s) statement and then take fair action on all quarters based on facts and laws,” Takiyuddin said.
However — contradicting its party leader — PAS’ Youth wing, led by Ahmad Fadhli Shaari, called for the government to step up and defend its integrity.
In a separate statement, he suggested Azam to go on leave to make way for investigations to take place and that this was necessary to ensure transparency.
“PAS Youth views this matter seriously, and it is the obligation of the government and the prime minister to take immediate action by holding an independent and open investigation.
“PAS Youth respectfully also recommends that all those involved, including the top MACC officers, go on leave until their names are cleared,” he said, adding that he hoped Azam’s name would be cleared and he could return to duty.
Recently, Edmund Terence Gomez, a political economy professor, resigned from MACC’s Consultation and Corruption Prevention Panel, in protest of the organisation’s supposed inaction against Azam’s alleged ownership of millions in publicly traded stocks.
On January 5, Azam in a press conference at the MACC headquarters said that he had willingly given his brother permission to buy shares using his share trading account and had already given an explanation to the Anti-Corruption Advisory Board (LPPR).
Azam added that he has decided to take legal action against those who have tarnished his reputation, although he did not divulge further details such as who would be named in his suit.
Azam also said that the accusations were the work of parties — which he left unnamed — who were out to damage his reputation, although he said that he does not know the reasons why someone would do such a thing.
It is understood that the shares in question had already been transferred back to Azam’s brother, Nasir Baki, back in 2015 — based on a statement by LPPR chairman Tan Sri Abu Zahar Ujang Abu Zahar at the same press conference.
Abu Zahar also vouched for Azam, saying that the board had cleared Azam of any wrongdoing or conflict of interest.