Government applauded for giving Parliament control of key agencies
Tuesday, July 03, 2018
PETALING JAYA: The government has been applauded for enhancing transparency and accountability by placing eight key government agencies under Parliament.

The Centre For a Better Tomorrow (Cenbet) said these agencies being powerful ones funded by public money should report directly to Parliament.

"These institutions are not there to serve the government of the day, but to ensure that the people's interest are upheld," Cenbet said in a statement today.

The move of these agencies previously under the purview of the Prime Minister's Department was announced via a letter dated June 26.

The agencies involved are the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), Election Commission (EC), Human Rights Commission of Malaysia, Public Prosecutor's Office, National Audit Department, Public Service Commission, Education Services Commission and the Judicial Appointments Commission.

Cenbet said previously there was widespread perception that many of these key institutions lacked independence.

It said this was corroborated by a survey it carried out that revealed low levels of trust for these institutions.

Cenbet said only 29% of the respondents found the previous federal government trustworthy.

"Having these institutions report directly to Parliament will free them of undue political interference and pressure.

"This will lay the foundations for a free, inclusive and more open Malaysia," it said.

Cenbet called on the government to set up a bipartisan Parliamentary Select Committee to oversee these institutions.

It said the committee will provide sufficient checks and balances even if Parliament is dominated by one particular party or coalition.

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