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Dr Koh said that the video 'is an insult to the sanctity and image of our medical profession' and demanded a public apology from the agency. — Picture by Choo Choy May
Dr Koh said that the video ‘is an insult to the sanctity and image of our medical profession’ and demanded a public apology from the agency. — Picture by Choo Choy May

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KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 5 — The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) today criticised the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) for its anti-graft public service announcement (PSA), depicting an act of bribery at a clinic in exchange for a medical certificate (MC).

MMA president Dr Koh Kar Chai said that as doctors, the video has “deeply offended” members of the medical fraternity, and called on the MACC to clean up its act, after allegations of corruption in the agency surfaced recently.

In a statement, Dr Koh said that the video “is an insult to the sanctity and image of our medical profession” and demanded a public apology from the agency.

“The government agency should have used other examples to convey its message. As doctors, we feel deeply offended by the post which should be taken down immediately. Have they forgotten our sacrifices for the country in battling our fiercest enemy which is the SARS-CoV-2 virus which has claimed 31,591 lives?

“Very recently, many of our doctors were also up to their waists in floodwater, sending aid to flood victims even while their clinics were destroyed by the floods. These are just some of the examples of our undying passion and commitment to providing care to the people,” he added.

Dr Koh also said the video was done “in poor taste”.

 

 

“The MMA demands that MACC issue a public apology for the video which we feel is done in poor taste and while they are at it, clean up its own backyard. From the long thread of comments by netizens in response to the video, it appears that MACC has issues in its own reputation to address,” he added.

The video by the MACC shows a doctor telling a patient that he was not ill after studying his medical report and that he would be given painkillers. The patient then asks if he can get an MC, with the doctor then subtly telling him that he can get it, so long as he does it the “proper way”, hinting at a bribe.

The man then hands her an envelope, with the doctor then asking him how many days of MC would he like, to which he asks for three days.

The MACC’s press conference to address allegations of corruption regarding its chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki is currently ongoing at the time of writing.

This comes after Edmund Terence Gomez, a political economy professor, resigned from MACC’s Consultation and Corruption Prevention Panel last week, in protest of the organisation’s supposed inaction against Azam’s alleged ownership of millions in publicly traded stocks.

However, Anti-Corruption Advisory Board chairman Tan Sri Abu Zahar Ujang Abu Zahar on January 1 denied receiving any formal notice from Edmund regarding the matter.

Last week, Putrajaya was urged to take immediate action against Azam, over his alleged ownership of the said stocks.

In a joint statement, six Opposition MPs said that Parliament should step in and form an independent investigation team under a select committee to probe the allegations in a transparent manner.

The six PKR MPs are R. Sivarasa (Sungai Buloh), Maria Chin Abdullah (Petaling Jaya), Sim Tze Tzin (Bayan Baru), Hassan Abdul Karim (Pasir Gudang), Fahmi Fadzil (Lembah Pantai) and Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh (Ledang).

The MPs listed a five-point action plan, including the full disclosure of assets belonging to Azam and other former MACC commissioners to secure the agency’s integrity.

They also recommended that Azam should take a leave of absence when the investigation is conducted.

They said that if the allegations were proven untrue, immediate action should be taken to clear the MACC, and law and regulations introduced to serve as a check and balance for all graft busters.

On December 14, Sivarasa filed an urgent motion seeking the Dewan Rakyat to discuss Azam’s alleged ownership of close to two million shares in a publicly-listed company.

Sivarasa claimed that Azam, as MACC’s investigation director between 2015 and 2016, became the owner of 930,000 shares in Gets Global Bhd as at April 30, 2015, and a further 1,029,000 shares as at March 31, 2016.

He also claimed Azam, as at March 21, 2016, also owned 2,156,000 warrants in publicly listed Excel Force MSC Bhd while the latter’s younger brother owned 3,728,000 shares in Gets Global.

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